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Alan Davies — Editor of The Urbanist

Alan Davies

Editor of The Urbanist

The Urbanist is edited by Dr Alan Davies, a principal of Melbourne-based economic and planning consultancy, Pollard Davies Consulting.

Modal shares for urban passenger transport 1900–2011

Is public transport the future of our cities?

The pandemic might've reduced the competitiveness of public transport, but it hasn’t altered the main game appreciably – that still remains civilising cars

Historical shares of motorised passenger travel by capital city, 1976 to 2019 (source data: BITRE)

What should we do to civilise driving?

Cars aren't going away so it's time to stop ignoring their downsides and take action to civilise them - make private vehicles smaller, slower, quieter, cleaner, and safer

Building a network of safe cycling routes in our major cities isn’t a post-pandemic ‘nice to have’; it’s a necessity. The immediate priority is putting it together very, very quickly

Is this the hour of the two-wheeler?

Building a network of safe cycling routes in our major cities isn’t a post-pandemic ‘nice to have’; it’s a necessity. The immediate priority is putting it together very, very quickly

A worker disinfects a rail carriage in China (via Business Insider; Credit: AP Photo/Ebrahim Noroozi)

How will the pandemic impact public transport?

Public transport is likely to take a post-lockdown hit from the pandemic and will have to adapt; but it will remain critical to the functioning of Australia's cities

Yet again politicians reach for the High Speed Rail elixir - this time as a prescription for national economic recovery from the pandemic. But it's snake oil

Is High Speed Rail the economic game-changer we need now?

Yet again politicians reach for the High Speed Rail elixir - this time as a prescription for national economic recovery from the pandemic. But it's snake oil

The NSW government’s planned Aerotropolis is conning residents of western Sydney. It's more about useful politics than  plausible policy

Will the Western Sydney Aerotropolis really deliver on jobs?

The NSW government’s planned Aerotropolis is conning residents of western Sydney. It's more about useful politics than plausible policy

The only surprising aspect of the Victorian government’s decision to terminate Melbourne Bike Share is that it took so long

Is ending Melbourne Bike Share the right decision?

The only surprising aspect of the Victorian government’s decision to terminate Melbourne Bike Share is that it took so long

Fringe suburbs have historically always had fewer jobs than workers. What policy makers should focus on is providing good transport links to the more central parts of the city where most of the employers want to be

Is labelling the outer suburbs as 'job deserts' helpful?

Fringe suburbs have historically always had fewer jobs than workers. What policy makers should focus on is providing good transport links to the more central parts of the city where most of the employers want to be

We can learn lessons from cities like Paris, but we must be alert to the dangers in importing solutions that might work well elsewhere but aren't well matched to local circumstances

Is Paris the right model for the Sydney of 2050?

We can learn lessons from cities like Paris, but we must be alert to the dangers in importing solutions that might work well elsewhere but aren't well matched to local circumstances

It's a popular idea, but the revenue foregone from abolishing fares in a city like Melbourne would have a bigger impact if it were instead spent on making public transport more competitive with driving

Should public transport fares be abolished?

It's a popular idea, but the revenue foregone from abolishing fares in a city like Melbourne would have a bigger impact if it were instead spent on making public transport more competitive with driving