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Monday, June 21, 2021

{Dream} City

The revolutionary dwarves of Wroclaw, Silesia

The little-known town of Wroclaw is sprouting dwarves. The most recent audit has their number at 573 in this town, the capital of Lower Silesia, a province that straddles Poland, Germany and the Czech Republic. Prior to the Second World War, this was Breslau in Germany, but the borders of Poland were moved West by Stalin.  East Poland became...

If we want ethical cities, we must change the way we plan them, experts explain

As the pressures in our cities intensify, such as unaffordable housing and congested roads, four expert practitioners in urban design and planning spoke with Genevieve Brannigan, the founder of the Communications Collective, about how we can make our cities more ethical. What is an ethical city, and why does ethics matter to city planning? The experts with the answers are...

Big promises, tiny homes

The ‘tiny house’ movement in Australia is growing, fuelled by Instagram feeds of beautifully crafted little dwellings in serene settings and, more recently, a display of tiny homes in the carpark at Bunnings, Port Melbourne. Tiny houses are touted as a solution to homelessness, housing affordability, environmental sustainability and a haven for those craving a simpler, minimal lifestyle. These are big promises. Tiny houses...

How do we create liveable cities? First, we must work out the key ingredients

Good access to people, services and other essential ingredients of wellbeing is a defining feature of liveable communities. flickr/US Department of Agriculture, CC BY By Melanie Davern, RMIT University; Billie Giles-Corti, University of Melbourne; Carolyn Whitzman, University of Melbourne, and Hannah Badland, University of Melbourne August 2018 Liveable communities and resilient cities are buzzwords of the moment. But exactly how do you define a...

The world’s ‘most liveable city’ title isn’t a measure of the things most of us actually care about

Vienna knocked Melbourne out of its seven-year-long top spot as the ‘world’s most liveable city’. From shutterstock.com By Julianna Rozek, RMIT University; Billie Giles-Corti, RMIT University, and Lucy Gunn, RMIT University August 2018 Melbourne lost its “most liveable city” title yesterday and is confronting being runner-up to Vienna after seven years at the top. These rankings are based on The Economist Intelligence Unit’s...

New centre for excellence on liveable, healthy cities 

May 2014 The community has a right to reject change, including those which lead to increases in urban density, if planners do not figure out how to avoid negative unintended consequences in their policies, says Billie Giles-Corti, a founding member of a new $2.5 million Centre for Research Excellence (CRE) in Health, Liveable and Equitable cities.  Non-communicable diseases, such as obesity, diabetes and mental illness, are on the rise, and our...

How the 2018 Commonwealth Games will change public transport in Queensland

December 2015 The 2018 Commonwealth Games village and the evolution of TODs Urban planners and developers around the world are keeping a close eye on the 2018 Commonwealth Games village – currently under construction on the Gold Coast – and not because of the sport. Centred on the Gold Coast’s new light rail, G:Link, the 2018 Commonwealth Games village exemplifies a number of...

If we want driverless cars to benefit our cities, we’d better get used to sharing

September 2015 Cars are making our cities unliveable. Traffic congestion, pollution, accidents and parking make us stressed, unhealthy and unproductive. Yet, far from diminishing, our fascination with cars is getting a shot in the arm with the driverless car. It seems we are just years – five or 10 – from this technology moving from marvel to normal. There are big...

Digging it: Are city farms important in modern urban design?

February 2015 The City of Sydney has embarked on an ambitious project to establish a farm in Sydney Park, a 40-hectare green space in the inner city suburb of St Peters, about 7kms from the CBD. The city council’s decision to proceed last September came in response to a strong push from a community of passionate urban farmers called the Sydney...

Will families ever buy apartments by choice?

November 2014 Building apartments for families is not for the faint-hearted, but Melbourne developers, Marcus Lyon and Paul Bell, are taking on the challenge. The project on Brunswick Group’s drawing board, inching its way through the approvals process, is a complex of 74 apartments, 12 of which have three-bedrooms, private outside spaces front and back, and are positioned on the quiet side...

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