MAV McArthur Fellowship 2005

I was extremely privileged to have been awarded the Municipal Association of Victoria - McArthur Fellowship in late 2005. This award is given each year to one Victorian Councillor to allow them to undertake research of relevance to local government. My award funded an inspirational trip in mid 2006 to North America and Northern Europe researching sustainable transport and planning and the role of community planning.

The overwhelming take home message from my travels was that top quality public transport, and walking and cycling facilities are possible and economically viable in Australian cities. The fundamental reason we don't have them is lack of political will, not because our cities are too spread out, or because providing them is uneconomic . I was very impressed on my travels not just at the quality of public transport, walking and cycling facilities but also the high quality community planning processes such as those practiced in Portland, Oregon, USA, and Vancouver, Canada. These have helped to build a sophisticated understanding in these cities of the need to constrain urban sprawl and invest in public transport facilities as a priority.

I have given many presentations about the learnings from my trip since returning home in mid 2006. Here is a paper based on these presentations