5 Trends in Town Planning and Urban Development

20 May 2020
 Categories: Business, Blog


With the turn of the decade having already passed, it is an exciting time for developments in suburban and metropolitan areas across all of Australia. Below are some of the most interesting trends to look out for regarding urban development.

Brownfield Developments

Brownfield developments are increasingly becoming popular throughout Australia. 'Brownfield' land is land that was previously used for industrial purposes such as factories and waste disposal or commercial enterprises. While not a given, these places are often contaminated by environmental or toxic waste pollution. In the past, brownfield developments were thought to have higher costs and longer development times, often acting as a deterrent to would-be investors. Typically, the risk associated with brownfields turns investors towards 'greenfield' developments, which are uncontaminated by waste and pollution. Now, with advances in sustainable remediation, developers can now introduce environmentally inclined design options more easily and can balance the cost of reducing the current and future environmental impact with reducing the cost and development time of projects.

Developing the Suburbs

Australia can continue to see the development of suburban areas found outside major cities such as Melbourne and Sydney, with residents desiring more inter-connectivity and availability of shops and other venues. This trend will only continue, with designers and architects taking tips and inspiration from the inner-city layouts that these suburbs branched out from. Expect to see more transport, high-street shops, and innovative new venues in the future.


Townhouses are increasingly becoming a popular option for first-time property buyers, as it strikes a great middle-ground between detached houses and apartments. With many sizes available, townhouses have the distinct advantage over apartments for the potential to have front courtyards or small back gardens. Expect to see more townhouses being developed and more and more people moving into them.

Segregated Roads

Segregated roads have been a success in Europe and the UK, and Australia has started to adopt this system more and more in cities across the country. As citizens are increasingly becoming more concerned about health and fitness, it goes without saying that the desire for pedestrian lanes, cycle paths and segregated roads for vehicles naturally increases with this cultural change.

Innovative Transport, Less Private Vehicles

Technology advances in the past decade have made transport and deliveries incredibly more efficient and convenient. With the popularity of companies like Uber and innovations in transport such as trackless trams and high-speed trains, private vehicles are fast becoming irrelevant. You can expect to see future and on-going road developments to optimise public transport efficiency and traffic in general.

To learn more, reach out to a town planning service.