Report takes aim at growth myths

Australians have little to fear of the nation’s growing population, with the country’s cities proving remarkably resilient and adaptive to increasing population a new report by the Grattan Institute has found.

The Remarkably Adaptive: Australian cities in a time of growth report found that the nation’s booming population has little impact on the daily lives of Australian commuters.

The report found that average commuting times had barely increased over the five years to 2016, even with the booming populations of Melbourne and Sydney growing at 2.3 and 1.9 percent.

The diffused impact of population growth on commuting is partly explained by the spread of jobs within the nation’s major cities, the report found. The report took particular aim at the misconception that jobs are predominately centred in the CBDs, whereas in reality fewer than 2 out 10 people work in the nation’s CBD’s.

The Institute conceded that while overcrowding and traffic is a problem that should be dealt with, workers are responding to the changing nature of modern life and commuting.

“People adapt – they are not hapless victims of population growth, depending for their wellbeing on governments building the next freeway or rail extension,” says Grattan Institute Transport Program Director Marion Terrill.

“With these changes, the benefits that draw people to live and work close together can outweigh the congestion and crowding that trigger demands to shut new people out,” Marion Terrill says.

The full report can be found here

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