Property Australia

Progress on cities policies

Ken Morrison Ken Morrison April 29, 2019

A year ago the Property Council launched our Creating Great Australian Cities project. 

The research – conducted by Professor Greg Clark and Dr Tim Moonen from The Business of Cities was designed to answer three essential questions: What are the forces of change shaping our cities? What can we learn from other fast-growing cities around the world? And what do we need to do to create great Australian cities for the future? 

The project offered new insights, a fresh narrative and a new policy framework for managing our cities. 

It’s a policy framework that is highly relevant to the federal election in just 17 days’ time. 

Pleasingly, the idea that federal governments should focus on cities is no longer novel. Our cities are where most Australians live, are our economic engine rooms and they are also growing and changing in fundamental ways. Both the Coalition and Labor recognise this and have clear policies on the table in this area.  

Central to this is the ‘City Deals’ model the Property Council has championed and which has been adopted as government policy. Its been encouraging to see the Government’s ‘City Deal’ framework build momentum over recent years, bringing together all three levels of government through an evidence-based approach to city-shaping projects and priorities. Should it win government, the ALP is proposing a ‘City Partnerships’ model with additional emphasis on the role of local government. 

This is welcome progress. But just as our cities grow and develop, we need to power up our investment in the ideas and policies our cities need. The Property Council’s election platform sets out practical steps to build on the current platform to help create the great cities Australians deserve.