A General blog by Paul Bennion.

Out of 924 cities in the world, Australia has four of the largest cites in geographic size according to the 2014 edition of Demographia World Urban Areas. Demographia World Urban Areas is the only annually published inventory of urban areas with a population of more than 500,000.

The annual survey found four Australia cities ranked in the top 60 cities throughout the world in terms of geographic size – Melbourne (29th), Sydney (40th), Brisbane (43rd) and Perth (59th).

These Australian cities now outrank many super cities in the world (cities with a population of more than 13 million persons) in terms of geographic size such as Tehran and Istanbul. The world rankings show, for example, show that Perth is just behind London in geographic size (10 million population and Manila (22 million population) even though our city has only a fraction of these population sizes.

Perth is also larger by geographic size than similar modern resource based cites such as Montreal which has a much larger population of nearly 3.5 million persons. The rapid growth of Australian capital cities is placing a huge financial burden on State Governments who have to construct infrastructure to support the growth of new suburbs. The financial cost of urban sprawl was recently highlighted in Melbourne with a report produced by The Department of Planning in that State indicated that it would cost that State Government an extra $40 billion in new infrastructure costs to proceed with its urban expansion plans compared to encouraging the redevelopment within existing suburbs.

This urban sprawl in Australia is now driving State Governments to encourage greater urban infill and this is creating new opportunities for property investors. As part of this policy to encourage urban infill, The Victorian Government recently released a major new planning policy called ‘Plan Melbourne’ which included short, median and long term objectives to achieve the delivery of 1,570, 000 new homes by 2051 of which 1,040,000 will be higher density and the remaining 530,000 will be traditional stand-alone houses.

In particular, Plan Melbourne has a target of identifying under utilised land surrounding train Stations such as North Richmond that can be redeveloped into new residential/commercial areas.
This major planning document represents a treasure trove of information for investors wanting to take advantage of infill development opportunities in Melbourne.

Further information on plan Melbourne can be found at: