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In 2011, when still CEO of Committee for Melbourne, I committed the organisation to look at hard infrastructure issues as part of the over-all ‘Melbourne Beyond Five Million’ process. I was pleased that the issues we identified formed higher priorities in the Government’s urban development plan.
Melbourne needs a fifty year plan.
A central element of the report proposed that Melbourne’s population would continue to increase over the next 50 years at a rate of 1.4 per cent, being a slower growth rate than the previous 50-year period of 1.65 per cent. Nevertheless, by the year 2060, the Committee estimates that Melbourne will have a population of around eight million people. Therefore, a fundamental and on-going challenge remains:
How do we make Melbourne more liveable at eight million in 2060, than at four million in 2010?
The Committee believes that the city must develop a 50-year plan to deal with the multitude of planning and infrastructure issues likely to surface as population grows. A possible approach to improved infrastructure coordination and management is to establish a permanent statutory body that reports to Parliament. This body would assure the condition and performance of Victoria’s infrastructure and long-term planning for future needs, in line with defined economic, environmental and social objectives.
The Committee has also promoted the need for a new governance structure to guide and implement Melbourne’s planning policy as the city grows.
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