The Australian Government released its 2020 Budget on October 6. In particular, the Budget is focussed on the impacts of the COVID–19 pandemic and the economic contraction that has caused for the community.
For governments and communities, ‘smart’ strategies in relation to cities and urban policy have appeal in that they offer technological solutions to urban problems such as waste management, community engagement and environmental sustainability.
The impact of COVID-19 economic shutdown has raised the prospect of a large number of Australian households being unable to continue to pay their mortgages in the near future.
Australian City Deals are aimed at increasing the productivity and liveability of specific geographical areas, and often target technology-based economic developments as a key solution. Internationally, a number of similar technology-focussed regional development programs—perhaps best called ‘smart city’ programs—can suggest features that need to be considered and addressed in such ‘deals’.
Access to affordable, appropriate, safe and secure housing is foundational to the economic, environmental and social functioning of cities. Urban policy in Australia is primarily focused on the supply of new housing in Australian cities in response to the need to manage urban growth boundaries and address housing affordability issues.