Future outlook required
BIC submission notes lack of sustained commitment to particular long-term land-use transport policy directions at both state and federal levels, writes MichaelApps
The Bus Industry Confederation (BIC) has recently made a submission into the future of our cities and regions and the Federal Government’s role that focusses on the importance of how we move people in the future to ensure our cities and regions continue to be productive and liveable.
How we move people sets the shape of our cities and settlement patterns and, at the same time, determines the connections to regions, towns and villages. I hope you can take the time to read the full submission, prepared by Professor John Stanley and myself, which is available at the OzeBus website, but here is an overview.
MOST LIVEABLE CITIES
Australia’s cities are the envy of many internationally for their liveability. However, we could be doing better in terms of long-term goal achievement related to population growth and landuse transport system performance.
Sitting behind this is a lack of sustained commitment to particular long-term land-use transport policy directions at both state and federal levels, partly because of a lack of bipartisan political support.
Cities are becoming more complex and this poses challenges for policy and planning. Links between land use, transport, economic productivity, housing markets and social exclusion illustrate this complexity. Integrated governance is central to tackling such cross- cutting issues. There is an urgent need to take more integrated approaches to city strategic land-use transport policy and planning and to better integrate governance arrangements between each level of government.
The BIC submission in addressing ‘Sustainability transitions in existing cities’ (Sub Inquiry 1) and ‘Growing new and transitioning regional cities and towns’ (Sub Inquiry 2) looked at: • Governance, with a particular focus on integrated governance in land-use transport policy and planning and how it might be improved in Australian cities, to enable them to deliver better economic, social and environmental outcomes; and • Regional connectivity and accessibility, with a particular focus on agglomeration economies from mobility improvements in Australian regions to better connect communities between regions and to both national and international economy and building bridging social capital to reduce the risk of social exclusion. Here are some of our recommendations to the Federal Government:
Recommendations for Sub Inquiry 1
• Pilots or case studies be undertaken to understand how a “Total Transport” approach can be implemented in Australia to engage local communities in local land-use transport and policy planning to identify best practice • Establish Metropolitan Planning Authorities for cities that increases local government involvement in strategic land-use planning processes and elects a “mayor” to speak on behalf of the city • The Federal Government to channel transport funding through Metropolitan Planning Authorities and have board-level involvement in the Metropolitan Planning Authorities • Strategic land-use transport policy and planning to require all cities to have long-term (25 to 40 years) land-use plans, leading a longterm strategic transport plan together with rolling shorter term (approximately 10 years) transport implementation plans which includes funding plans • Federal Government infrastructure funding and project identi cation be contingent on Recommendation 4 • A Federal Ministry for Cities is a permanently agreed portfolio, recognising the national signi cance and importance of cities • The Federal Government develops a solid cities research and information base, including performance indicators to spur better national performance outcomes for cities • City performance indicators be a factor in
determining federal funding • Intergovernmental funding reform be undertaken that includes better aligning city revenue capacities with expenditure responsibilities • Formal agreements between levels of government be established to effect changed governance and government arrangements based on agreed prinicples to deliver “trusting partnerships” to deliver better cities • Land-use development direction to pursue more compact settlement patterns supported by strategic transport directions that takes into account local nuance. To see the list of recommendations from Sub Inquiry 2, plus the full