The expanding urban frontier: urban form in Melbourne's growth areas

Buxton, M and Scheurer, J 2005, The expanding urban frontier: urban form in Melbourne's growth areas, RMIT Publishing, Melbourne, Australia.


Document type: Book
Collection: Books

Title The expanding urban frontier: urban form in Melbourne's growth areas
Author(s) Buxton, M
Scheurer, J
Year 2005
Publisher RMIT Publishing
Place of publication Melbourne, Australia
Subjects Public Policy
Summary The debate over urban consolidation in Australia has generally ignored the issue of density in the outer urban suburbs of Australian cities, an omission that has led to a serious inconsistency in policy. Governments are emphasising the need for urban intensification in established areas of cities while continuing to allow outer urban areas to be developed at average densities that are among the lowest in the world. Deregulatory policies of the 1990s and an increased reliance on markets have led to increased levels of medium density and high-rise development in Melbourne's inner suburbs and CBD, and broad-scale development in outer suburbs at very low densities. In the process, development companies became the primary determiners of urban form in both inner and outer areas. At the urban fringe, they largely continue to regard intensification, changes to hierarchical retail structures and a reversion to more traditional forms of urban design as a higher commercial risk than proven business-as-usual approaches. This study seeks to place the issue of outer urban densities on the planning agenda of state and local governments. Unless current practices are changed in Melbourne, land set aside in outer urban areas will be used up for housing faster than necessary, and large areas of land squandered. The failure to increase densities in outer urban growth areas will jeopardise compliance with Melbourne 2030 (DOI, 2002a) objectives by preventing the achievement of growth targets in activity centres, and by leading to renewed pressure to remove or substantially alter the Urban Growth Boundary (UGB) and allow further residential development in Melbourne's green belt.
Copyright notice © Michael Buxton, Jan Scheurer, School of Social Science and Planning 2005
ISBN 0864593767
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