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April 2016

More population growth, higher density living

Population growth in Australia continues apace and interestingly most of the growth is pouring into our cities and major regional centres. In New Zealand, while there isn't the same growth rate driven by immigration, the population growth areas are also almost exclusively in the cities, particularly Auckland.

So how are we planning to provide housing for everyone? Apparently by fitting more people into less space.

Higher density housing is now not only part of our lives but it will be increasingly so. This week I participated in the excellent Higher Density Living conference in Sydney. Attended by local government planners, consultants, architects and developers, nobody is arguing against higher density housing. But we are arguing about how and where it should be, and how high.

We’re learning that higher density housing plays an important role in the spatial geography of the new economy. While many people are taking up the higher density lifestyle, one of the biggest challenges is getting community acceptance of higher density housing – and design has a lot to do with this.

We also need to explain and articulate the benefits of higher density housing to our communities so that they are brought along on the journey. As former planners, we developed a methodology that helps to do this using an evidence-based narrative. Some of the attendees at the conference expressed an interest in learning more about it so here is a link to what we call housing.id.

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Author Ivan

Population series

Latest population growth and change in Australia - Biggest, fastest, slowest

 
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Each year the ABS releases population data for local government areas and other small area geographies in Australia, and the latest publication was recently released. Which Australian cities are growing the fatest? Which areas are losing population?  

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Demographic trends

Mortality in demography – when, how and where do people die?

 
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Of the three components of demographic change, the least discussed is mortality. After all, who wants to sound morbid talking about death? But as demographers, we need to understand when, how and where people die because it impacts on our population forecasts in terms of our assumptions about future levels and rates of mortality.

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New Zealand

The implications of lower levels of home ownership on social capital

 
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Higher levels of renting seemed to roughly correspond with less affordable home ownership levels. But why does it really matter if people rent or own? What implications do lower levels of home ownership have on our society?

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