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Published on : Wednesday, November 27, 2013
New population growth forecasts showing Sydney and Melbourne will each be home to around 8.5 million people within 50 years reinforce the need for federal investment in public transport infrastructure, according to peak national industry body Tourism & Transport Forum (TTF).
The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has released new forecasts showing Australia’s population is expected to double by 2075, with three-quarters of the growth occurring in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth.
TTF Chief Executive Ken Morrison said that clearly shows the need for increased investment in public transport.
“The new forecast is for Melbourne’s population to reach 8.5 million people in 2060 – double its current levels, with Sydney’s population to increase by 80 per cent to 8.4 million,” Mr Morrison said.
“Over the same time frame, Perth’s population will more than double to 5.5 million, while Brisbane will grow to 4.8 million.
“This will mean much higher densities in our four biggest cities and that will require significant investment in mass transport modes like rail to ensure their mobility and productivity.
“It simply will not be possible to build roads to cater for the movement of that many people.
“While state governments are making welcome investment in public transport infrastructure, we are reiterating our call for the federal government to revisit its position on funding public transport in our cities.
“It is unsustainable to quarantine federal funding for road projects only, especially in light of these new ABS projections.
“Our cities are already key drivers of our economy and will be increasingly important as they house a higher proportion of Australia’s population in the future.
“With congestion in our four biggest cities already costing $13.8 billion a year, it’s vital that we increase our investment in public transport and the federal government has the means to make a significant contribution in that regard.”