This Part of the ATAP Guidelines contains guidance for integrated transport and land use planning (ITLUP).

As noted in Part F0.1, integrated transport and land use planning is a central feature of good planning, and should occur at all planning levels (see Figure 1 of F0.1). To help achieve this, integrated transport and land use planning forms a central element of System Planning in the ATAP Framework (see figure above).

This guidance is designed to be fit-for-purpose for Australian practitioners to improve integrated transport and land use planning across Australia. The guidance is informed by a review of existing guidelines, consultation with jurisdictions[1] and a review of case studies.

Integrated transport and land use planning addresses a city or region’s longer term challenges, working to a shared vision of what a city or region aspires to be in the future and coordinating investments and policy decisions to achieve that vision in an optimal manner.

ITLUP guides strategic decisions regarding growth corridors, designated centres, major transport and other infrastructure that influence how a place works – where jobs, housing and transport connections will be located, how they connect across the existing transport network and how local places function.

These decisions have a long legacy and reversing them takes a long time and is often costly. Strong integration between land use and transport can avoid these issues, while also creating an efficient transport and land use system that can generate a range of economic, social and environmental benefits. These benefits must be adequately understood and captured during the integrated planning and appraisal process and maximised after an initiative opens to reach its full potential.

Central to these Guidelines is a focus on:

  • Explaining the shift from the traditional cluster and connect model of ITLUP to an emerging approach that also formally recognises the city shaping impact of some transport infrastructure
  • Distinguishing between strategic (city shaping), structural and local transport infrastructure and explaining why a good understanding of their different influences on land use is essential to the new ITLUP approach.

The enhanced approach, and supporting guidance, provided in this Part of the ATAP Guidelines aims to achieve:

  • Optimal urban structure (such as influencing the overall extent of the city and densities within it) through harnessing the city shaping power of strategic transport infrastructure to influence urban development
  • Optimal urban form at the district, corridor and local (suburb and neighbourhood ) levels through use of the cluster and connect planning model.

Good coordination and governance are also promoted as central elements for achieving optimal economic, social and environmental outcomes from ITLUP.

Box 1 A note on terminology

Geographical levels

Various terms are used in planning to refer to geographic scales. The following terms are used here, going from largest to smallest scale:

  • City or region – where the term city is used here to mean the overall metropolitan area
  • Corridor or district – the sub-regional scale
  • Local – suburb or neighbourhood.

Urban structure and urban form

The distinction between urban structure and urban form is helpful. Troy (2004) suggests:

  • Urban structure is the spatial relationships between cities and their services and activities; that is, whether the activities are arranged in linear relationships and are highly centralised or whether the city is structured as an interconnected set of nodes around which development is arranged.
  • Urban form is the nature or density of development. All major cities in Australia are essentially low density, especially in their residential areas, although recently the city centres have been developed to high density.

As used here, urban structure is a more macro concept than urban form. Urban structure refers to the overall settlement/development pattern of the entire city, while urban form refers to the spatial characteristics, particularly at a local level.

Infrastructure types

A distinction between three types of transport infrastructure is also used (see section 4) to reflect their relative influence on land use decisions:

  • Strategic or city shaping
  • Structural or district
  • Local or follower.

By definition, only the first is city shaping; that is, it influences urban structure (and form). The latter two only influence urban form.

[1] Seven out of the eight state/territory governments were consulted as well as Infrastructure Australia