Conference paper

Planning for disruptive transport technologies: how prepared are Australasian transport planning agencies?

18 Jun 2018

This paper reports on new research to understand the preparedness of government planning agencies for the arrival of new technologies of automated private and public transport vehicles in Australasian cities. Already corporations are playing an increasing role in the shaping of Australian cities through their ability to mobilise capital to support large infrastructure projects and to usurp institutional planning roles which have traditionally been the responsibility of public-sector agencies. The paper outlines emerging evidence of changes in the roles of corporations in generating ideas and mobilising political support around favoured city-shaping projects, in which the private sector is embedded in the processes of government, such as planning, in a much more complex way. Through ‘market-led’ or ‘unsolicited’ proposal evaluation frameworks corporations can now bring proposals to government in ways which go outside traditional planning processes and bypass conventional engagement with civil society. In this context, we present data from a recent survey of state and national land-use and transport planning agencies. The survey, conducted through semi-structured interviews, gathered information about the expectations of these organisations in relation to the nature and timing of the deployment of new autonomous vehicle technologies; about the potential implications for achieving environmental and social planning objectives; and about the collective infrastructure investments that AV technologies may require.This work is being used to shape a new research agenda to explore the planning and regulatory frameworks that are needed to ensure that the AV technologies can be deployed in ways that maximise the public good.

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