Why we need a betterment levy in NSW: better late than never

The NSW Productivity Commission in November released its final report on the Review of Infrastructure Contributions in NSW (PC Review). It controversially ruled out capturing a share of windfall gains made from rezonings or the granting of additional development, even though this is widely used in voluntary planning agreements (VPAs) and state infrastructure contributions (SIC). […]

Infrastructure Australia steers a sustainable direction

It might be a sign of changing times or Romilly Madew’s green pedigree coming through, but climate adaption and response projects topped Infrastructure Australia’s priority list for 2020

California’s wildfires and what Australia can learn

In 2018, the US state of California saw its worst-ever bushfire season on record. The Fifth Estate spoke to US architect and sustainable design guru David Hertz about what the region learnt about designing and managing infrastructure in the face of ever-increasing fire risk.

Alan Pears on the baby steps towards overcoming governance failures in the building sector

It has taken something dramatic like burning building cladding to focus governments on the chronic failings of our building industry when it comes to key aspects of public interest. It is going to take billions of dollars to fix this, while the victims will suffer traumatic dislocation. Taxpayers and victims will end up paying most […]

Five important ways the federal leadership could show leadership

The federal government keeps pushing back on taking responsibility for major national infrastructure centred on cities. But there are five good reasons it needs to reassess and take a leadership position.

The post-election infrastructure review

The NSW and federal 2019 elections saw the return of Coalition governments. My perspective – from western Sydney – is: Coalition infrastructure policies have been dreadful, Labor’s offerings weren’t any better.

Queensland’s big infrastructure spend in Brisbane and what it means

As one of Australia’s fastest growing cities, Brisbane has faced more than its fair share of growing pains. South Brisbane’s population is expected to treble by 2031, while Greater Brisbane’s will rise to 2.95 million.  Anticipating this dramatic population surge, the Palaszczuk Labor government has begun substantial infrastructure projects, committing to a $944 million urban […]

Rethinking traffic congestion to make our cities more like the places we want them to be

Soon after becoming prime minister last year, Scott Morrison appointed a minister for “congestion busting”, signalling the importance he attaches to this issue. The large number of Google search results on “traffic congestion in Australian cities 2019” (9.5 million) and “traffic congestion in Australian cities costing the economy 2019” (8.3 million) seems to support his […]

A national EV network a good start, but more action is needed

A national electric vehicle fast-charging network, flagged as a “high priority initiative” by Infrastructure Australia for the first time last week, will help drivers overcome distance anxiety and accelerate EV take up in Australia according to ClimateWorks Australia project manager Sarah Fumei.

Public transport funding, now for the good news

In this latest edition in our transport series, we look at how major cities of Sydney, Melbourne, Perth and Brisbane are dealing with the building and the finance elements of the challenge.

Population growth needs more infrastructure investment

Population and the pressure on infrastructure are shaping up as key election issues. Here’s what the Opposition spokesman on these issues, Anthony Albanese, says are the problems and the solutions. A few years back there was a popular genre of computer games that allowed players to build civilisations from the ground up. Players would build […]

On what China is doing with its tech and why we should care

China has technology that can scan a billion faces in one second. It’s using that level of technology to plan its cities and transport. It knows that cities are the powerhouses of the economy it wants.

Sydney’s transport planning fundamentally flawed

A highly experienced transport specialist who worked under several state government regimes claims that NSW’s troubled road and rail infrastructure planning is fundamentally flawed. 

Alan Tudge: on congestion, infrastructure and population

Newly appointed minister for cities Alan Tudge on 9 October in Melbourne delivered a view of the challenges of Australian cities driven largely by rapid population growth, and some of the solutions that he says include encouraging migrants to move to regional areas and better infrastructure. A little over a month ago, Prime Minister Scott […]