Delivering Quality Intensification in the Suburbs: A Case Study of University Hill, Melbourne, Australia

Achieving compact transit-oriented development is one of the key policy aims embedded in a number of Pacific Rim urban growth management strategies, including within Australasia and North America cities.

These policy approaches seek to counter the adverse impacts, and inefficiency of urban sprawl. However, delivering these outcomes, together with achieving the aspirations of creating viable and liveable communities, with good urban design outcomes has proved to be problematic, especially within suburban situations.

Drawing on research from other cities in Australasia and the Pacific North West region of North America, Dr Beattie considers these issues, and presents findings from an investigation into one such suburban re-generation project located at the edge of the Melbourne’s region urban boundary, University Hill in the City of Whittlesea.

Dr  Lee  Beattie considers the factors, which have contributed to the development of a successful suburban re-generation outcome which has created a new mixed use community incorporating retail high street activities, industrial and commercial uses, with a range of housing topologies to meet the needs of a well design and sustainable community. These outcomes were significantly different to those initially planned for the area: a sprawling large format industrial estate.

Dr  Lee  Beattie draws on the results gained from the interviews of a range of key stakeholders responsible for developments of University Hill, including the built environment professionals involved in its design, the property developers and the local regulatory authority.

Dr  Lee  Beattie concludes with a range of learnings which could be relevant to other suburban re-generation projects within the Pacific Rim.

Dr  Lee  Beattie, Deputy Head Urban Planning, School of Architecture and Planning, University of Auckland, New Zealand will present at the:

5th International Urban Design Conference to be held September 10-12,  Hilton on the Park Melbourne

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