Get social to increase density

Almost everyone with an interest in the future development of Melbourne agrees that a key strategy for dealing with unprecedented population growth is to increase the supply of multi unit housing in the suburbs.

Unfortunately there is also a consensus that this objective will be hard to achieve given the near certainty that existing residents will fight tooth and claw to resist new developments in their neighbourhood. Read the rest of this entry »


20 years of TAC campaigns

The Victorian Traffic Accident Commission’s montage of 20 years of road safety advertisements. This is very harrowing. Read the rest of this entry »


“If London can do it, why can’t Melbourne?”

If London can really grow without expanding its urban perimeter, why did our planning Minister, Justin Madden, seek to extend Melbourne’s urban growth boundary last year?

As I noted on Friday (How big is Melbourne?), journalist Jason Dowling says that “forever outward expansion (of Melbourne) is not a necessity. London has barely touched its urban perimeter for decades but has grown in population with better use of old industrial and commercial land”.

There are three aspects of this quote that I wouldn’t accept at face value. Read the rest of this entry »


More on the Windsor Hotel redevelopment

I had a look on the weekend at the report of the independent Advisory Committee established by the Planning Minister, Justin Madden, to advise him on the application for a planning permit for the redevelopment of the Windsor Hotel. I’ve previously commented on this issue, here: Windsor Hotel Redevelopment.

There is some interesting information in this report that so far hasn’t gotten much, if any, airing in the media. It reinforced my earlier view that approval of this development was the right decision. Read the rest of this entry »


The hazards of restricting supply

An object lesson for city policy-makers – this is what happens in Dogtown when supply is restricted. Of course we humans would eliminate the queue by selling the tree to the highest bidder! Read the rest of this entry »


How to ‘green’ the Grand Prix

How could the QANTAS Australian Grand Prix be made greener?

This is a pretext to post on Formula One because the Australian GP is being held in Melbourne this weekend, but it’s nevertheless an interesting question (almost as interesting as this morning’s news that Lewis Hamilton was caught doing donuts in St Kilda last night!). Read the rest of this entry »


How big is Melbourne?

How big is Melbourne really? This issue is ‘front of mind’ this morning because of a recent claim in The Age that Melbourne “is already the eighth largest city in the world in geographical size, stretching about 100 km from east to west”.

This is a common view. In June last year The Age’s editorialist said “Melbourne’s population of 4 million already sprawls across roughly 100 kilometres in all directions, occupying a bigger area than much more populous cities such as London or New York”. Read the rest of this entry »