Better cities discussed

By: Amie Hickland

About 100 stakeholders turned out in Canberra recently to discuss ways to improve city living

Better cities discussed
Lucy Turnbull speaks at the Parliamentary Friendship Group for Better Cities event

Transport, housing and general liveability are all issues facing Australian cities.

The Parliamentary Friendship Group for Better Cities – led by the Bus Industry Confederation (BIC) – held its second event recently to advocate the issues at a parliamentary level.

The Friendship Group is a forum for ideas and discussion on how to make Australia’s capital and major cities more liveable, more resilient and more productive.

Topics covered at the forum included the land and housing challenge — making our cities liveable, affordable and efficient — the Federal Government’s role, the land and housing challenge- making our cities liveable, and affordable and efficient – the Federal Government’s role.

BIC Executive Director Michael Apps says about 100 people attended the second event, including stakeholders from the 13 member groups.

Various ministers, senators and advisors were also in attendance.

Former Lord Mayor of Sydney Lucy Turnbull was keynote speaker at the function.

Turnbull is Director of Sealink Travel Group Limited, and currently a board member of the Australian Technology Park, the Redfern Foundation Limited, the Turnbull Foundation and the Grattan Institute.

 "She talked about the importance of cities, the importance of transit in our cities and about the need to make our cities function properly and the right approach to affordable housing," says Apps.

The Friendship Group is co-convened by Jane Prentice, Ryan Andrew Giles and Adam Bandt.

Industry groups supporting the group include Australasian Railway Association, Cycling Promotion Fund and International Association of Public Transport Australia & New Zealand.

Apps says the Friendship Group intends to hold two more events next year with different keynote speakers and panel discussions.

"The group is important because it’s another arm in our advocacy strategy to engage all the political parties to discuss what the Federal Government’s role in our cities and urban development and how we move people and public transport," he says.

The event was held on November 25 at Parliament House, Canberra, from 7pm.

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