Thursday, 29 October 2009

Rudd pushes plan for better, greener cities

Wednesday 28/10/2009 Page: 9

AUSTRALIAN cities need to be better planned and the Federal Government was willing to use its power over the purse to ensure they were, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said last night. The Commonwealth would consider linking future infrastructure funding to conditions imposed on projects, he said. "The goal is that our cities have strong, transparent and loner terns plans for growth and high-quality urban development, that our cities are productive, liveable and sustainable. "If the Commonwealth is to foot any significant part of the urban infrastructure bill", it would "expect to have confidence in the integrity of the strategic planning system in our major cities", lie told the Business Council of Australia in Sydney.

Mr Rudd outlined eight criteria for strategic urban planning to be based on:
  • There should be credible plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions through initiatives such as energy efficiency pleasures, changes in town planning, improvements in public transport infrastructure and reform of building codes and regulations.
  • The risks of climate change causing coastal flooding and other problems should be provided for.
  • Land release should be arranged to meet the housing needs of a growing population and keep homes affordable.
  • "In-fill" and greenfield developments should be balanced.
  • World-class design and architectural integrity should be emphasised.
  • Significant infrastructure such as transport corridors should be built and upgraded.
  • Governments should take into account independent advice.
  • An effective framework for private-sector investment should be provided.