Government launches State of Australian Cities 2010

STATE of Australian Cities 2010 has been released by the Australian Government today. Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Anthony Albanese formally released the report today at the Queensland Media Club.

In his speech, Mr Albanese states that "given the Australian Government's primary role in economic policy, infrastructure provision and social welfare it is clear that a national framework can only be achieved by a national collaborative approach." He also states that "urban policy does not detract from this Government's recognition of regional and rural Australia."

  • Written by Urbanalyst

Building approvals decrease in January

FOLLOWING four months of rises, the seasonally adjusted estimate for total dwellings approved fell by 7.0 per cent in January, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics data released yesterday.

A total of 14,045 dwelling units were approved in January. The seasonally adjusted estimate for private sector houses approved rose 0.3 per cent to 9,630 but approval for private sector other dwellings (apartments and semi-detached houses) fell by 29.1 per cent (to 2,880).

Last month, Tasmania and Victoria lead the country in terms of building approval increases. This month, however, Tasmania and Victoria had the largest decreases, with seasonally adjusted total dwelling approvals falling by 27 per cent and 15.9 per cent respectively. Queensland (-7.4%) also recorded a decrease in approvals. New South Wales (+3.5%), South Australia (+22.2%) and Western Australia (2.9%) achieved gains in the number of total dwelling units approved.

  • Written by Urbanalyst

RBA lifts rates to 4.0 per cent

THE RESERVE Bank of Australia yesterday decided to raise the cash rate by 25 basis points, from 3.75 per cent to 4 per cent, effective today, Wednesday 3 March.

In his statement, RBA Governor Glenn Stevens said "the global economy is growing, and world GDP is expected to rise at close to trend pace in 2010 and 2011." Mr Stevens said that whilst global financial markets are functioning much better than they were a year ago, credit conditions remain difficult in some major countries.

  • Written by Urbanalyst

December 2009 building approvals increase: Tas and Vic lead the way

BUILDING approvals in Australia grew by a seasonally adjusted 2.2 per cent in December 2009, and by 53.3 per cent compared to December 2008 figures, according to data released yesterday by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). Seasonally adjusted, nearly $8 billion worth of building was approved in December.

Victoria (+4.6%), Queensland (+2.2%) South Australia (+0.5%) and Western Australian (+3.3%) recorded more private sector house approvals this month according to the ABS. New South Wales recorded a slight decrease (-0.3%) in private sector house approvals. There was no seasonally adjusted data available for Northern Territory and ACT.

Overall, all states except New South Wales (-12.7%) achieved gains in the number of total dwelling units approved. Seasonally adjusted data shows that Tasmania recorded growth of 21.7 per cent in December, Victoria (+11.1%), Queensland (+4.0%), Western Australia (1.3%) and South Australia (0.1%).

  • Written by Urbanalyst

The population debate: to grow, or not to grow?

THE population of Australia is expected to grow rapidly in the next 50 years. There are competing arguments for and against such growth occurring.

This article attempts to provide an outline of some of the arguments and opinions regarding population growth in Australia. Please check back periodically as new ideas and opinions are added.

  • Written by Urbanalyst

November 2009 building approvals increase

THE Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) released data for building approvals for the month of November 2009. 

The data shows seasonally adjusted growth in national residential building approvals in November 2009 increased by 5.9 per cent compared to figures for October 2009.  In the year to November, residential building approvals achieved growth of 33.3 per cent.

The number of dwelling approvals rose in New South Wales (+6.0%), Victoria (+10.2%), Queensland (+12.4%) and South Australia (+1.6%).  Western Australia and Tasmania experienced a decrease in dwelling approvals (-10.3% and -20.1% respectively).  There was no seasonally adjusted data available for Northern Territory and ACT.

While the number of houses approved decreased for November (-2.0%), this was offset by a rise in approvals for dwellings other than houses (+31.7%).

  • Written by Urbanalyst

Woolies hardware plan will 'devastate' independents: Xenophon

INDEPENDENT Senator for South Australia Nick Xenophon says the proposed takeover of hardware supply company Danks Holdings by Woolworths and Lowe’s will destroy competition and drive independent hardware stores out of the market.

Contrary to the claims of Woolworths that the acquisition will allow them to continue to support and grow the independent retailers, Senator Xenophon states that it "will allow Woolworths access to information about more than 1500 independent stores around the country" and that "Woolworths will know which stores are doing well, which stores are worth taking over and which stores can be put out of business."

  • Written by Urbanalyst

Woolworths enters Bunnings' space

GROCERY giant Woolworths Limited has announced its plans to move into the $24 billion hardware sector through acquisition of Danks Holdings Limited (Danks), a joint venture with Lowe's and ambitions to secure 150 sites for large format hardware stores within five years.

Founded in 1946 and based in North Carolina, USA, Lowe's has grown to be the second largest home improvement retailer worldwide and the 7th largest retailer in the U.S.

According to Woolworths, Danks is Australia's second largest hardware distributor supplying 583 Home Timber & Hardware (205), Thrifty-Link Hardware (312) and Plants Plus Garden Centre (66) stores plus 939 independent hardware stores. The Danks Board has unanimously recommended that its shareholders accept the Woolworths/Lowe's offer.

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Cities battle for NBN central (The Australian)

THE government may have just appointed an executive chairman to lead its ambitious plan to build and operate a $43 billion national broadband network but it is not clear which city the NBN company will call home.

NSW, Victoria and Queensland have all sought to claim the NBN headquarters, but so far only the two southern states have shown the conviction to make real bids... [Read more at The Australian].

  • Written by Urbanalyst

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