Posts tagged ‘urban planning’

Link: “The world’s ‘most liveable city’ title isn’t a measure of the things most of us actually care about”

Original post found at: https://theconversation.com/the-worlds-most-liveable-city-title-isnt-a-measure-of-the-things-most-of-us-actually-care-about-101525

…the tool was actually designed to help companies decide how much “hardship” allowance they would need to pay employees who relocate. So, The Economist suggests that none of the top cities – including Melbourne, Vienna and other Australian cities – need a hardship allowance at all. But it recommends a 20% allowance for cities at the bottom of the ranking like Port Moresby, Tripoli and Karachi.

Despite the hype, the Global Liveability Index focuses on things that matter to expats, not citizens. This is different to what is important to the average person living in Vienna, Melbourne or any other city – such as housing affordability, walkability, access to public transport and education, and the number of bike paths.

With (some) Melburnians today indignant that we’ve been beaten in this year’s rankings by cities like Adelaide, Perth and Auckland, it seems like a good time to remind ourselves that these stupid “liveability” rankings are designed only to rank the lifestyles of ultra-wealthy expatriates, and not normal city residents. This is why, for example, they assess only private schools and not public ones, or why they only evaluate the infrastructure in inner-city/rich-people areas. I would be very happy never to hear about this list again 😛

Link: “Public Housing For All”

Original post found at: https://www.noemamag.com/public-housing-for-all/

I have long thought that public housing for all is the only way, long-term, to ensure a decent standard of living for all while current economic trends (automation, etc.) continue on their current trajectory. And similar to other “welfare state” features, like public healthcare – the best way to ensure it’ll be high-quality is to make it something rich people use, too 😊

Wiki: buses

For large swathes of outer-suburban Melbourne, buses are the only form of public transport available, and even in the middle suburbs (like where I live) buses are necessary to “plug the gaps” between railway lines, which fan out radially from the city and never intersect. So it’s unfortunate, then, that our bus network is so crappy.

Most Melburnians seem to see buses as a mode of …

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Link: “The Cuyahoga River Caught Fire at Least a Dozen Times, but No One Cared Until 1969”

Original post found at: https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/cuyahoga-river-caught-fire-least-dozen-times-no-one-cared-until-1969-180972444/

Maybe due to my age, I hadn’t heard of this incident until recently. People complain about the Yarra being polluted (which it is) but maybe it’s a sign of how expectations have changed over time that I take it for granted that rivers don’t catch fire.

Melbourne's Property Development Crisis

Like many people, I think, I have an instinctive contempt for property developers.

It’s not that I object to new apartment buildings, per se. There do seem to be a lot of people in Melbourne who think that three million was the perfect population size for our city, and since as far as they’re concerned we were “full” at that point, we should continue to have a housing …

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Link: “Basics: Access, or the Wall Around Your Life” by Jarrett Walker

Original post found at: https://humantransit.org/2021/03/basics-access-or-the-wall-around-your-life.html

Here’s a good article about evaluating public transport through the prism of “access”, or how much of the city you can reach within a reasonable amount of time for the given purpose. Certainly in Melbourne this is very unequal across the city; the further away you get from the inner suburbs, the more large “gaps” you get between railway lines with very poor access to the wider urban area.

a cartoony avatar of Jessica Smith is a left-wing feminist who loves animals, books, gaming, and cooking; she’s also very interested in linguistics, history, technology and society.