Sydney, ANZAC and Glebe Island Bridges, Sydney - photo Marghanita

Ecologically Sustainable Sydney


Planning for a Sustainable City

Having my say on Shaping my State: Metropolitan Strategy

The comments below were submitted to the NSW Government's March 2010 Shape Your State: Metropolitan Strategy Review. See RSS Feed of Comments

You can respond to my comments below, at the Metropolitan Strategy site, by clicking on the "commented" links below, or to me, via the contact us link above - Marghanita da Cruz.

  1. Reducing car usage

    The aim for Sydney’s public transport should be to enable travel to multiple workplaces by public transport in 30minutes.

    Otherwise this is the effect on the inner cities CO2-e emissions from Traffic through Annandale

    Changing jobs should not require changing homes – look at the problems in Canberra

    (commented March 19th, 2010 at 10:40 am)
  2. Alternative transport options

    There has to be better respect for pedestrians and cyclists.
    Cities like Berlin and Cambridge enable cyclists to move easily between the road and pavement – where they park their bikes. Those not confident to ride on the road are able to use the pavement.

    In Sydney the footpaths are poorly designed and maintained. Pedestrians and bus users have to negotiate light poles, trip hazards, shelters obstructing access to bus stops and even construction instructs them to “use other footpath” on opposite side of the street.

    seePedestrian and Bus Passenger Safety compromised

    (commented March 19th, 2010 at 10:51 am)
  3. Greener communities

    Disused Railway Track with Mungo Scott flour millsUse more Indigenous vegetation in Streets and Parks – reducing the need for artificial watering, maintenance and increasing the CO2 absorption. Indigenous vegetation in Traffic Islands

    Require housing/apartment developments to include:
    *natural drying of clothes
    *natural ventilation (to prevaling winds)
    *composting on site green waste management Community Composting and Balcony Wormfarming

    (commented March 19th, 2010 at 11:05 am)

  4. Increasing energy efficiency

    Energy use rather than efficiency Labelling

    Size of FridgeEnergy UseCO2-e
    205 litre217 kWh/year208,320 g/year
    643 litres830 kWh/year796,800 g/year

    more at CO2 emitted in electricity generation to run House Hold Appliances

    (commented at March 19th, 2010 at 11:16 am)

  5. Vibrant centres

    *Diversity of People (Ages/Occupations)
    *Diversity of Entertainment (Cafes/Restaurants/Theatre/Art Galleries/Film)
    *Diversity of Services (Childcare/schools/PO/Bank/Medical/Food Shopping/Retail)
    *Diversity of Employment
    *Public Open Space (paths and playing fields)
    *Diversity of Local Community Groups
    *Access to Learning/Libraries/classes/school (yoga, pilate etc)
    *Access by public transport/foot for work and play
    *Information about what’s available

    (commented March 19th, 2010 at 11:38 am)

    Tuckshop in Trafalgar St, Annandale - Photo Marghanita 2006...and Perhaps there is life in that corner store after all...

    (Commented March 23rd, 2010 at 3:58 pm)

  6. Better land use

    Buildings and Communities need to be sustainable. We could build a Dubai with transitory workforce or a society in which people are born, grow up, live and die in. Sydney's footprint is already too large we need to infill.

    We need to make the best community amenity, ie enable wide access, of our land and built resources in terms of capital investment and ongoing operation.

    For example, Libraries should be consolidated - Education Departments (schools)/Tertiary Institutions/Councils and State Libraries should all be a community resource - providing a meeting place, information, access to the Internet etc. Such places need to be accessible, without requiring taxis or private vehicles, particularly to parents with children, elderly and wheel chair bound. Similarly with sporting facilities, gardens, nature reserves and community vegetable plots and orchards.

    Front gardens/balconies form an important part of the street scape and a private/public space.
    Solar Access and Natural ventilation is needed within and external to buildings to provide natural cooling and drying of clothes.

    The scale of residential and commercial buildings needs to support pedestrian and public transport amenity. Encouraging movement between private and public space. Examples are City Edge Canberra and the 3 story single dwellings in the East Perth Renewal
    It needs to be easier and cheaper to take public transport, to where you want to go, than own a car. Perhaps enable more shared/hire/taxis car businesses.

    Allocation of land to private vehicles (ie roads and parking) needs to be valued accurately and alternatives provided. Think back to the Olympics - when you could travel from a desk in North Sydney to a seat at the Hockey and then home later, in 30 minutes!

    (commented March 23rd, 2010 at 2:56 pm)

  7. Improving Design

    Design for the pedestrian rather than the car.

    (Commented March 23rd, 2010 at 3:12 pm)

  8. Sydney's population

    Seems there is a bit of Spin on the projected population of Sydney (see below) and the need for rash actions!

    Enabling existing home owners to consider subdividing their properties, within environmental guidelines, seems the best approach to increasing accommodation in an organic way - which responds to market demand. Increase the density of your suburb and the services will follow.

    Large residential building are not socially or environmental sustainable. Rather than releasing more land, reuse existing real estate in country towns. Though lessons need to be learnt from the Suburban sprawl through the Blue Mountains Villages, the Central Coast and Canberra, which struggles with a population of just 300,000.

    Sydney population 4,254,900 - ABS: REGIONAL POPULATION GROWTH DATA HIGHLIGHTS FOR 2004-05

    "In the year to June 2008 the population of the Sydney SD increased by 55,000 people (1.3%) to 4.4 million people. The Sydney SD represented around 63% of the NSW population." - ABS: POPULATION CHANGE IN SYDNEY 2007–08

    Since 1947, the Sydney region has more than doubled its population. It is now 4.1 million people....could reach 7.4 million people by 2051 - JENNIFER WESTACOTT, Director General, Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources, Tuesday 18 May, 2004 (PDF)

    Since 2005 new challenges have emerged. Following recent Census data Sydney’s population (including the Central Coast) is forecast to be 5.7 million by 2031 and 6 million by 2036, an increase of 1.7 million people from 2006. - Metropolitan Strategy Review (17 March 2010)

    (Commented March 30th, 2010 at 12:01 pm)
  9. Comment on Greenfields Development

    Stationary traffic on a highway Greenfields development doesn't just threaten Agricultural land. It is expensive to provide services, destroys eco-systems and threatens species.

    Brownfield development in existing towns along highspeed train corridors provides many advantages. A high speed train between Goulburn/Canberra and Sydney and between Newcastle and Sydney would make more brownfield sites in NSW attractive for development.

    Such a strategy would also facilitate tourism and increase property values in areas in between and improve existing rail corridors. The train would also reduce demand on Sydney Airport - by providing an alternative to air travel between Sydney, Newcastle and Canberra.


    (Commented April 5th, 2010 at 8:59 am)

  10. One of the presentations at the APPS4NSW Hackfest was to create a consumer network of air quality monitoring – from which air quality could be reported.

    My carbon footprint of traffic was an extrapolation of statistics. See CO2-e emissions from Traffic through Annandale.

    Reducing private car use has two benefits – more efficient road travel and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

    The department of environment currently reports on air quality, but not specifically on greenhouse gasses.

    (Commented on April 8th, 2010 at 9:18 am)

  11. Using electronic tools, instead of face to face meetings and paper correspondence, provides time and energy efficiencies. Reducing business travel dramatically cuts energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions -

    (Commented on April 15th, 2010 at 5:03 pm © Ramin Communications 2010-11. Last modified 29 November 2013.