Good planning plus affordable housing equals a liveable city

Carolyn Whitzman, Billie Giles-Corti
Appeared in The National Times – March 16, 2012

We have to tackle the liveability challenges in all parts of Melbourne.

FOR the 80 per cent of us who are urban Australians, we live in confusing times. Our capital cities with their high-quality parks and public open space, good schools, relative community safety and rich options for cultural life rate highly against international counterparts for liveability.

On the other hand, Australian cities have unsustainable per capita environmental footprints compared with other developed cities around the world. We are more car dependent, our cities sprawl over a larger proportion of prime agricultural land, and we have higher rates of obesity than most countries in the world.

Health and wellbeing, liveability and environmental sustainability are all closely linked. All three imperatives call for good-quality affordable housing. But a constant supply of housing alone is not enough for our cities to be healthy, liveable and sustainable.

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