We must use our space wisely as part of new planning protocols

melbourne Liveable Cityby Matthew Guy in an article for the Herald Sun

PLANNING the growth of a city that is home to 4.5 million people is not easy.

Melbourne is one of the world’s most liveable cities, but it hasn’t achieved this by chance and won’t stay there under the current planning regime.

That’s why the Victorian Coalition Government has embarked on a total reform of our planning system to put a much greater focus on liveability than ever before.

“The view that every tram line should be lined by seven-storey apartments is one that might suit a city of 400,000 people in Switzerland, but it’s not as feasible in Australia.”

Despite a tough economic climate, Melbourne’s population is still growing strongly. Each year upwards of 60,000 more people call our city home, placing great pressure on how Melbourne is planned and ensuring that government planning blueprints are focused on the longer term, not just the next few years.

Good planning requires a multi-faceted approach to managing growth but, first and foremost, we have to recognise that our city is not all the same.

Our suburb’s character greatly differs from Bayside to the Dandenong Ranges; from Eltham to Carlton and Werribee to Pascoe Vale.

Melbourne’s greatest asset is clearly that our city has so much diversity within it and it is these differences in neighbourhoods that have made Melbourne so liveable and desirable to call home.

Our planning system is governed by planning zones that determine what building can go where.

There are commercial, industrial, farming and residential zones, which are now being reformed and modernised.

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