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Developing  National Urban Policies - ways forward to create green and smart cities, by Springer/ UN-Habitat

September 2020

Sara Stace was invited by UN-Habitat to write a book chapter on Australia's experience in publishing National Urban Policies in 2011 and 2016. The book is part of UN-Habitat's commitment to ensuring that countries can deliver on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The book is published by Springer here (paywall). Free excerpts below.

Active Transport for Canberra
Urban Design Protocol
SOAC Reports
National Urban Policy
Made In Australia
Building Better Cities
Springer-UN Habitat
Waverley Transport Plan
United Nations SDGs
How to Formulate a NUP-UNHabitat-cover.J
United Nations UN-Habitat: How to Formulate a National Urban Policy

March 2019

Sara Stace was invited by UN-Habitat to co-author a paper on How to Formulate a National Urban Policy, as part of a series of guides to assist countries to achieve their Sustainable Development Goals. The document is free to download here.

10-year Transport Plan: Waverley's People, Movement and Places

December 2017

Waverley Council's transport plan is a visionary approach to transport planning. It starts with a transport hierarchy that puts pedestrians first, followed by bicycle riders, public transport, service delivery, shared vehicles and then private motor vehicles. It sets Waverley Council to be the first council in Australia to achieve Vision Zero, and the first to roll out a blanket 40kmh speed zone for the whole local government area.

The document was adopted by Council as policy in December 2017, written by Sara Stace as Manager of Strategic Transport. The background research and documentation was prepared by Bitzios Consulting. 

- Waverley's People, Movement and Places: Transport Plan (pdf)

Active Travel Plan: Orange City Council

June 2016

Link Place was commissioned by  Orange Council to prepare an Active Travel Plan, in partnership with urban&public Aspect Studios.

The Plan looks at current national and state policy settings, and the barriers and opportunities to success of an active travel program. It also assesses key aspects of road safety, health and economic benefits. The Principles for active travel are based on Link Place's  highly-recognised active travel framework: Plan, build, encourage and manage. 

The document was adopted by Council as policy in June 2016. 

- Active Travel Plan (pdf)

Transport for Canberra: Building an integrated transport network
Active Travel Framework

May 2015

Link Place was commissioned by the ACT Government to prepare a discussion paper and policy on active travel. 

The policy paper establishes a framework which outlines how the government can better integrate planning and delivery of active travel initiatives to further encourage and support walking, cycling and riding as part of Canberra's overall urban planning, transport, health, environment and education systems.

- Policy paper 2015 (pdf)

- Policy summary 2015 (pdf)

- Transport for Canberra (ACT Government website)



Walking, Riding and Access to Public Transport:
supporting active travel in Australian communities

July 2013

Discussion paper and policy on active transport, with actions for Australian governments to better meet national targets for road safety, physical activity and public health, disability access and carbon emissions.

- Policy paper 2013

- Discussion paper 2012

- Key facts and figures




Creating Places for People:
an urban design protocol for Australian cities
November 2011

The national urban design protocol was embedded into the top two sustainability ratings tools in Australia: Green Star-Communities (GBCA) and Infrastructure Sustainability (ISCA).

The protocol was developed in response to the COAG Reform Council's review of capital city strategic planning systems criterion 8 'to encourage world class urban design and architecture'.

- Website (

- Protocol paper

- COAG Reform Council review of Capital City Strategic Planning Systems





State of Australian Cities reports

2010, 2011, 2012, 2013

The State of Australian Cities report (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013) collates and analyses data across a range of economic, social and environmental parameters to provide snapshots of the 18 major cities.

The reports won a prestigious national planning award from the Planning Institute of Australia in 2014.

The 2013 report was also accompanied by an interactive GIS web mapping tool. 

- SOAC 2013

- SOAC 2012

- SOAC 2011

- SOAC 2010


The SOAC 2014-15 was released by the Australian Government available here.





Our Cities, Our Future:
a national urban policy for a productive sustainable and liveable future

May 2011

The National Urban Policy established objectives and priorities to make Australian cities more productive, sustainable and liveable.

- National Urban Policy final paper 2011

- National Urban Policy summary

- National Urban Policy discussion paper 2010

- National Urban Policy background and research paper 2010





Made in Australia: the future of Australian Cities

'Coding the City' essay by Sara Stace and Dorte Ekelund on the cities agenda at a national level. Book by Richard Weller and Julian Bolleter, 2013, 'Made In Australia: the future of Australian cities', UWA Publishing.

- Excerpt: Coding the City

- Book review: Made in Australia





Building Better Cities

Desktop review of the Building Better Cities program. Review commissioned by Major Cities Unit and completed by AHURI. Not previously published.

The Building Better Cities program ran from 1991-96.

- Building Better Cities Program evaluation report





Houses of the Future

Australian Year of the Built Environment 2004

Six prefabricated houses showcased at the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Olympic Park,

one each of timber, steel, concrete, brick, glass/nanotechnology and cardboard!

Articles here and here


Waverleys People Movement Places-cover.J
Active Travel
Active Travel
Coding the City: Sara Stace; Richard Weller; Julian Bolleter
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