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Sunday
Dec192010

5 Big Ideas For Urban Australia



 

 

 

Export Australian city building know-how

1. Making city building and re-building a national export service for Australia—Our capital cities all rank high on global scale for quality of life. We also have one of the most robust architecture, design and engineering industries in the world. Our designers do more work in Asia than in Australia. Asia and particularly China needs our expertise to build its new 150 cities that must be environmentally very sustainable. We should use the rebuilding of our own cities as the vehicle to attract Chinese and other Asians and Latin Americans professionals here to study and to contract with us to build and rebuild their cities. This is a far better export than coal and build on our intellectual capital with no harm to our environment

 

Cities Are Key To Australia’s Export And Climate Future

 

2. Creating a new national urban infrastructure financing program—we have to develop a better way to finance the future infrastructure for Australia and use some of the methods we use din the past-saving money from natural resources and using the savings bank to borrow internationally through a national Infrastructure Bank that would underwrite large scale local projects in our cities and states. Local and State government could use this infrastructure bank to float tax increment bonds based on the revenues the projects like a new rail will develop in taxes for new projects to retrofit our cities.

We Can’t Wait For a Crisis to Transform Our Cities

 

3. Make high speed rail the backbone of national commerce-linking all of our East coast airports thus reducing the need to build more airports. High speed rail is not just for passengers. It can carry freight too and reduce the long waits at our ports for some smaller technology products as well as link our airports so we can use all of them long the East coast as feeders for international tourism.

Urban dreaming: Australian cities for the future

4. Re-positioning our immigration program—to best a brightest to our cities as education hubs which means reducing the number of immigrants and increasing the higher education backbone of immigration and skills-link immigration to skill shortages with jobs and education as part of the entry and not an after education process-so immigrants would have a prospective employer/sponsor/apprenticeship at first stage of immigration

Universities can be the engine of urban renewal and development

 

 

5. Dealing with Water for now and the future of the nation and making our water technologies leaders for the urban world. The loss of the Darling River head is an indicator of how short we are on water nationally. Our future is dependent not so much on what farmers do but what we do to capture and harvest water in the cities and reducing city water consumption from the rivers. But we also need a national urban water plan that is far more ambitious than what we have and is more in line with proposals to use water from the north, alter crops and to provide farmers incentives to harvest and sell water back to the cities for industrial use.

Confronting our water challenge