The State of Australian Cities (SOAC) national conferences have been held biennially since 2003 to support interdisciplinary policy-related urban research.
Papers presented within the Infrastructure stream of the 2005 conference covered a range of topics and interest areas. The quality and depth of analysis and research that was covered in the papers reflects a strong interest in the sector. The papers generated healthy debate in all sessions. A number of the papers reflected contemporary perspectives on the city, particularly in terms of infrastructure planning and delivery. While we live in an era where there is serious disconnection and frustration at times with metropolitan plans, and yet massive funds are available for infrastructure through public private partnerships, GST dividends, superannuation funds and new financial instruments (some of which are being led by Australian based companies).
The range of topics covered in papers included:
• Transit oriented development in various guises
• Papers about the links between transport infrastructure, land use and sustainability
• Critical thinking about transport capacity questions, including an instructive (if counter-intuitive) examination of Melbourne’s rail network
• A session covering water provision from three differing perspectives
• An account of infrastructure provision in metropolitan planning • New patterns of transport and mobility disadvantage.