October 23, 2017 - The release at the weekend of the draft NSW Future Transport Strategy and Greater Sydney Region Plan is a win for sensible, integrated urban planning.
“We’ve come a long way from the old silo mentality that used to exist around land and transport planning, where the left hand didn’t necessarily know what the right was doing,” RA President, David Stuart-Watt, said today.
“As Australia’s largest city, Sydney has huge challenges in front of it. These two important documents need to be considered together, and the timing of the releases indicates the NSW Government and its agencies are committed to ensuring future land use and transport planning should, and will be, intrinsically linked.”
Mr Stuart-Watt said the Great Sydney Commission’s concept of Growth Infrastructure Compacts, a formal mechanism for bringing all the key players together to align housing and jobs growth with infrastructure delivery, was particularly meritorious and long overdue.
Equally, the Future Transport Plan provided a single transport vision that all levels of government could work towards, he said.
Mr Stuart-Watt also welcomed the Transport Plan’s focus on new technologies and demand-driven, customer-centric solutions.
“This Transport Plan is fundamentally about two things: putting the customer first, and maximising the opportunities created by new technologies - those we know are coming, and those we don’t,” he said.
“The game is changing rapidly. Fully automated vehicles are just around the corner, and our technological capabilities for capturing and using data to improve how and when we travel are improving all the time.
“The Technology Roadmap released last year is at the heart of this Plan - a recognition that we need a flexible framework in place that allows us to ‘adopt and adapt’, as and when new technologies and mobility solutions emerge.”
Mr Stuart-Watt said roads would continue to play a critical role in our transport future.
“The lines between public and private transport will become more blurred in the future,” he said. “We’re likely to have greater flexibility and more options – and our road networks will be key to delivering many of these options.”
Mr Stuart-Watt added that the increased focus on regional infrastructure and services was essential in building equitable access to jobs and services across NSW.