Urban experts reveal key ingredients for successful cities

Urban experts reveal key ingredients for successful cities
Urban experts reveal key ingredients for successful cities

The Stockland Liveability Index has found the most important factors in creating a liveable city is for it to be connected, healthy, smart and affordable.

The index is based on the results of a survey of 2,500 people that was conducted between January and March 2017 in partnership with Colmar Brunton.

Findings and relevance to the future direction of our cities will be discussed at a special event hosted by the Committee for Sydney featuring land use expert Professor Christopher Leinberger, Greater Sydney Chief Commissioner Lucy Turnbull AO, Stockland CEO and managing director Mark Steinert, and co-founder of Roberts Day, Mike Day.

Mark Steinert, Stockland managing director and CEO, said they are delighted to partner with the Committee for Sydney and bring Professor Leinberger to Australia at a time when as a nation we are rethinking the future of our cities, with a strong focus on liveability.

“For communities to be liveable, they need to be smart, healthy, connected and importantly, affordable," he said.

"The powerful emerging market trend toward walkable urban development in the US is one we expect to see replicated in Australia, as our cities continue their strong growth trajectories.

“Capturing and applying the insights from research by experts such as Professor Leinberger will help ensure our growth story is a positive one for the people who live, work and visit our metropolitan centres.”

Professor Leinberger’s 2016 report, Foot Traffic Ahead, shows that: “For perhaps the first time in 60 years, walkable urban places (‘WalkUPs’) in all 30 of the [US’] largest metros are gaining market share over their drivable sub-urban competition — and showing substantially higher rental premiums.”

Tim Williams, Chief Executive of the Committee for Sydney said governments at all levels are accelerating their efforts to shape the future of our cities, with a focus on ensuring we have the right infrastructure and public amenities in place to make them sustainable and liveable over the long-term.  

Mike Day, Co-Founder of Roberts Day, said with Sydney suffering from the overlapping crises of health and affordability, a key step to transform Sydney is creating walkable places.

"Walkable places offer people safety, comfort and delight," he said.

"Benefits of a walkable Sydney include creating a true 30 minute city to address the fact people of Western Sydney are three times more likely to suffer from diabetes than their inner-city counterparts.

“The emerging equity issue Sydney needs to address is people’s proximity to walkable places.

"By giving priority to walkable places as the new missing middle of Sydney’s density done well discussion, the added value of improved health, happiness and productivity, means everyone benefits.

“The obesity statistics present a significant challenge facing the liveability of Australian cities. 

“Our research shows us that if we work with government and other key stakeholders to fast-track schools, parks, childcare, cafés and shops, we can have a profound impact on the liveability of our communities and the health of residents.

"The social imperatives for doing so is compelling and is supported by equally clear commercial ones.

“The Federal Government’s Smart Cities Plan, as well as State planning policies including the recently-released Greater Sydney Commission District Plans, reflect the importance of liveability measures.

“The unique perspective offered by our Liveability Index is the voices of more than 2,500 residents – from the ground up, sharing their experiences of what makes a community work well.”

The Stockland Liveability Index provides three key lessons for cities:

1.     Provide opportunities for community interaction:

  • Parks, cafés, walkways, schools, children’s playgrounds, cycleways
  • Build in technology, to connect communities from the outset and enhance customer experience
  • Create links with the natural environment
  • Community programs, like parents’ groups and exercise classes, for community connection and physical exercise.

2.     Introduce well-designed neighbourhoods:

  • Smart design, with places that are walkable
  • Carefully plan all new homes to be close to childcare, schools, retail, parks and playgrounds
  • Access to employment, transport and health facilities.

3.     Deliver infrastructure early, where possible:

  • Fast tracking key infrastructure such as playgrounds, schools, public transport, parks,
  • outdoor exercise stations
  • Proven to generate high levels of resident satisfaction and community pride.

A recording of the discussion will be available at www.sydney.org.au.

Survey Stockland


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