Maheshwari_B_Balanced urban growth – Is it a myth or reality?


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Beyond the Edge: Australia's First National Peri-Urban Conference
La Trobe University
Oct 2013

Published in: Technology, Real Estate
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Maheshwari_B_Balanced urban growth – Is it a myth or reality?

  1. 1. Basant Maheshwari, Michael Buxton, Donna Craig, Brian Davidson, Ashantha Goonetilleke, Kathi HoltDamant, Hector Malano , Kevin Rozzoli and Bruce Simmons
  2. 2. The Urban Growth Dynamics Outer-urban Urban
  3. 3. Blacktown 4 years ago
  4. 4. Blacktown now
  5. 5. Penrith 4 years ago
  6. 6. Penrith now
  7. 7. Australian cities are growing  Sydney 2025  5.9 million;     Melbourne: 2025: 5.0 million, Most Australian cities will double their population by 2050 This growth mainly occurs in the outer suburbs Building and managing these growth areas is a significant challenge We need a will to find sustainable solutions for the issues facing cities of the future
  8. 8. Why Urban Growth?  The growth of urban land areas occurs as the result of four obvious factors: (1) population growth, (2) increase in the number of households, (3) increasing affluence and (4) commercial expansion. The less obvious but real reasons for the growth are developers’ vested interests, government’s addiction to use urban growth as a means to keep the economy going and greed of speculators.
  9. 9. What are we faced with?  Urbanisation is everywhere around Australia and globally;  It is a looming crisis and the future liveability of our urban areas is at risk;  We need to do something about it before it is too late to retrofit things at a great cost later;  We need to understand what we are trying to do and how it is going to affect us into the future and what can we do better now;
  10. 10. Peri-urban issues fall between the cracks  It is neither looked after by urban nor by rural policies and actions.
  11. 11. Balancing Urban Growth No development; Status quo Build more houses; Developer driven
  12. 12. Urban Growth – Land use is the main driver
  13. 13. So, the key questions are…  How do we achieve balanced urban growth so that our urban and outer-urban areas are liveable and sustainable into the future (in >20 years)?  While urban growth is happening, how do we keep our waterways and ecosystem healthy?  Do we need to grow some food around our cities in the future?
  14. 14. We need balanced urban growth so that our cities and towns will be liveable into the future.
  15. 15. So, What Is Balanced Urban Growth?
  16. 16. How can we achieve balanced urban growth?  The know-how to achieve sustainable and liveable cities is now available  But….  Current policies and planning for urban expansion do not often use technical, economic and social aspects together  A way forward is:  Integrated and trans-disciplinary approach and evidence-based planning and decision making  Research and industry groups and government agencies working together
  17. 17. Balanced Urban Growth Planning – It needs right and succinct information.  Policy makers need clear and concise information (often a one-pager) to make quick decisions and policy formulations.  We need to facilitate cooperative research, development and capacity building for sound evidencebased planning that will continuously maintain and improve land within outer urban developments
  18. 18. Transdisciplinary Research is needed
  19. 19. Urban Growth – A Myth or Reality Myth Reality We can control urban growth. Urban growth is practically unstoppable. Food production in peri-urban areas is insignificant and not economically viable. Food produced in peri-urban areas has values beyond just $ value. It has social and other values, and therefore it can be made viable. Peri-urban is distinct and defined. Peri-urban boundary is dynamic and can not be defined easily. It is a fuzzy and a complex area. Everyone needs to do their bit to get the This is not adequate. There needs to be urban growth right. integrated planning and development for a common goal.
  20. 20. In concluding - how do we achieve balanced urban growth?  We need to work on interconnectivity of environmental, social and economic aspirations;  We need to connect to players in all relevant sectors to bridge policy, industry and research divides and seek solutions that are integrated and deliver mutually beneficial outcomes.  We can no longer afford isolated solutions aimed at just one sector. Decisions on land use, water, energy and food production can and do have direct impacts and often unintended consequences on each other and on other related sectors.
  21. 21. Thank you!