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Australia’s demographic is changing radpidly. With our population set to reach 50 million this century, how will it impact the way we plan our communities?

After reviewing 57 regional planning strategies, we realised Australia didn’t have a holistic plan to accommodate growth in our urban areas. So we called for a National Settlement Strategy.

What is a National Settlement Strategy?

It’s a proposal for the government to gain more insight and spatial context to action strategic plans across Australia. It sets out a coherent vision that will help create more resilient, better connected and more liveable cities and towns.

It’s not about forcing people to settle anywhere

Or changing constitutional responsibilities for planning. It’s about planning places, homes and jobs and mapping them to broader growth outcomes – to make sure we’re investing in all the right areas to support our future.

A National Settlement Strategy should:

  • get the community involved and lead a balanced national discussion about the future of our cities and regions as places to live and work
  • help us look for factors that influence regional population growth and change
  • provide a framework for addressing climate change resilience, hazards and carbon reduction in the built environment
  • tackle the underlying trends that are shaping cities and towns.

Where do we go from here?

On our journey to 50 million, we need to think about what sort of country Australia wants to be. Megatrends Shaping our Future sets out the challenges of growth, globalisation, urbanisation and digital disruption facing our nation. How do we plan to overcome them?

At ž, we’ll aways advocate for a National Settlement Strategy and promote the recommened steps in the Alexander Inquiry, Building Up and Moving Out – ž’s submission. When it comes to planning strategy, we need a greater focus on place-based infrastructure planning and funding, common infrastructure demand and population scenarios to make a real change.