Suburban agenda gains momentum in Victoria

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The better cities = better suburbs movement is coming to Melbourne with not-for-profit group Suburban Alliance appointing Mr Rob Burgess as Victorian director and releasing a report Suburbia on the Rise.

The Suburban Alliance was started in Brisbane and has experienced strong success in Queensland putting a number of suburban projects on the agenda for state and local governments.

Co-founder and Director Steve de Nys said the organisation was led by a passionate group of people with an interest in urban planning and welcomed the addition of new members and a director to lead the agenda in Victoria.

“The Suburban Alliance uses compelling research and fact-based evidence to encourage governments and the property industry to look beyond the city centres to the suburbs that support them. 

 “Mr Burgess is the National Director of Research and Strategy at Charter Keck Cramer and is a natural fit for our organisation. Our expansion into Victoria couldn’t come at a more auspicious time.”

To coincide with the launch of its Victorian group, the Suburban Alliance has released a report on the suburban issues that need addressing in Victoria and the importance of suburban places post COVID-19.

Mr Burgess said following a decade of unprecedented development activity during which time Melbourne was deemed to be the World’s Most Liveable City no fewer than seven times, the outlook for the 2020s could barely be more different.

“As profound social, demographic and economic changes take effect, ensuring that Melbourne’s suburbs provide what matters to the people that live there will be critical,” Mr Burgess said.

Mr de Nys said the Suburban Alliance had already demonstrated that in Queensland, Governments were focused on building infrastructure and facilities in the inner city at the expense of the suburbs.

“Suburbs have long been seen as the poor cousin of the city, but the reality is, in the current climate suburban places not only account for the majority of a city population, but they are also now safer, healthier and in demand like never before,” he said.

“Our capital cities need to change and adapt to the new normal and now is the time to find more funding, planning and infrastructure for the Suburbs.”

Mr Burgess added that the coming decade presented a series of challenges and opportunities that would require a concerted effort to enable an equitable quality of life that provides for the needs of all suburban residents. 

Through ongoing research and advocacy, Mr Burgess said that he looks forward to promoting the significance of Melbourne’s suburbs and continuing the excellent work of the Suburban Alliance. 

Available for comment & interviews

Rob Burgess 

0417 708 925

Steve de Nys

0413 515 808

Photo by Pat Whelen from Pexels

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