Home' Future Building: The Australian Infrastructure Review : Volume 3 Number 2 Contents futurebuilding 77
Volume 3 Number 2
Public Sector Reform Panel
process that was adopted there, which is to say that
if you comply with the reforms, if you undertake
the reforms, you get part of the bene t in terms
of payments by the Commonwealth. If you don't
comply, you don't get the bene ts.
TM: One of the reasons we are in a mess
with infrastructure in Australia is that some
decades ago, we gave up trying to plan the big
cities strategically. For land-use planning and for
infrastructure planning, the time horizon is 20 or
more years, so it's not short-term.
If you do that planning, you can cheaply reserve
the land that you'll later need and start to have a real
grasp of what the priority projects are.
Land-use planning also includes where you
put residential developments, and where you put
The tragedy of Melbourne is that the western
suburbs have broken the pattern that has been here
since World War II. That is, you are now seeing huge
residential tracts without places where people can
get a job.
People have therefore needed to get across the
Yarra to the CBD or to the eastern suburbs for a job,
and that's what is killing a lot of the infrastructure
Sydney and Brisbane have similar problems.
Unless you do plan strategically, you end up with
the problems we've got at the moment, and you end
up with much greater costs when you try to create
remedies for the absence of strategic planning in the
All of that planning is a precondition of being
smarter and more creative about how you fund
particular pieces of infrastructure.
KS: The most important thing to do is just get on
and do it. There's a general consensus about many
things in the infrastructure space, and there doesn't
seem to be a suf cient sense of urgency to actually
get bulldozers out.
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