Tag Archives: Urban planning

Bicycles v cars: Adam Spencer on city commuting

Adam Spencer cycling advocate and ABC presenter

You may know Adam Spencer as a presenter of ABC Radio in Sydney and from ABC TV. But did you know he cycles everywhere and hardly ever drives?

In the lead up to ‘Ride to Work Day’, Adam goes into bat for the bike. In fact, in this interview he says what he really thinks of the constant hoo-haa about building more roads and tunnels in our cities. And doing the traffic report when you don’t drive a car.

Audio: Listen to our interview with Adam Spencer on why the bike is better.

Video: Adam Spencer also has a gentle word about the price of petrol.

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Sydney City Farm struggles to plant its roots

Will Sydney get its own urban farm? In the first of our series on city farms, we look at the proposal to put an organic farm at Callan Park in the city’s inner west.

The proposal draws ideas from successful farms that have ready been established in places like Melbourne and London. And the site is a beautiful location right on the harbour and in the grounds of the now abandoned mental hospital.

It all sounds good, apart from the fact that the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority have not included the farm in their plans for the whole site and a final decision is going to be made on its future use soon.

Audio podcast
In this interview I speak with Rod Simpson and Andrew Jackson from Sydney City Farm. Andrew is the head of this non-profit organisation and Rod is the architect and designer behind the plan. You can listen here to the Sydney City Farm interview. It starts with Rod Simpson.

How to support the Sydney City Farm
If you think the farm is a good idea, there’s a couple of things you can do. Join the mailing list at www.sydneycityfarm.org and write to the New South Wales Planning Minister and to the Vice Chancellor of Sydney Uni to ask them to include the farm in their plans.

More info on Sydney City Farm
More on the farm in this article from the Sydney Morning Herald.

Do your own thing
If you want to join or start a community garden where you live, check out the Australian City Farms and Community Gardens Network.

Jan Gehl – the urban planning rock star (part 2)

Cities like Sydney and New York can shake their car culture and get people to walk and ride bikes. It can be done. It’s happened in Copenhagen. It’s even part of the Danish national health policy. Jan Gehl tells us all about it.

He also tells us about the transformation of the Melbourne CBD (thanks to his plans.)

More common sense and dry Scandinavian humour from the urban planning rock star.

The ‘urban planning rock star’ changing city environments around the world

Wall to wall vehicles. Thats how Jan Gehl describes Sydney’s CBD. He says Sydney has squandered its beauty and it’s time something was done about it.

Professor Gehl was commissioned by the City of Sydney to re-think its centre. He’s proposed to divert cars and give streets back to the people. Sound radical? His plans have been implemented in other cities like Copenhagen and Melbourne, and surprise, they’ve made life heaps better. And, interestingly, not just for people. Businesses have thrived too.

Check this interview out – Jan’s quite a character. No wonder he’s been called an ‘urban planning rock star’.

His next commission, by the way, is to develop a plan for New York City.