We the people have the choice to change our cities. Many cities in Europe offer safe and attractive streets, with jobs, shops and schools all accessible by walking, cycling and public transport. Melbourne can do this too. The only barrier is failing to understand how easy it is to achieve.

Amsterdam wasn’t always Amsterdam

Amsterdam wasn’t always the way it is now. After the 2nd world war, Amsterdam was dominated by cars, and the authorities were telling people to get off the road.

Before/after photos of how Amsterdam has changed

Residents and ratepayers in Amsterdam decided that they wanted a city that worked better for people walking, cycling and using public transport, so demanded change. Before / after photos showing how Amsterdam has changed are available at Sustainable Amsterdam and Streetsblog.

Image credit: ©Frans Busselman & ©Thomas Schlijper

Melbourne can do this too

Walking, cycling and public transport is not limited to small cities like Amsterdam – large cities like Melbourne can do this too. Examples include Greater Manchester, Greater London and Greater New York, which are all spread out over large areas. Greater Manchester recently won the 7th Sustainable Urban Mobility Plan (SUMP) award, showing that dispersed cities can use sustainable and active transport.

Greater Manchester vs Greater Melbourne. Image credit: Google Maps

Leverage the heavy rail network

Walking, cycling and buses can expand the coverage of our heavy rail network.

Design guides

Learn more from this collection of design guides, including the Victoria Walks guide to accessible shopping streets and connected train stations:

Image credit: David Mepham and Victoria Walks