The Victorian government has released its new planning blueprint, with aims to make the towns of Bacchus Marsh, Ballan, Bradford, Kilmore, Warragul-Drouin and Wonthaggi major population and employment towns.
“With Victoria’s population projected to rise to 8.4 million by 2050, regional cities and towns are well-placed to take a greater share of population growth,” minister for planning Matthew Guy said.
“A key initiative of Plan Melbourne is to unlock the growth potential of these cities – so they can accommodate a greater proportion of the state’s future growth – and provide good transport connections between them and Melbourne.
“This will create a ‘State of Cities’ where there are greater choices for people about where to live, work or start a business.”
Mr Guy said the aim was not to replicate Melbourne’s growth and development.
“Population growth in and around these towns should not be an imitation of Melbourne’s growth area suburbs, but should offer less crowded, lower-density housing product that is more suited to regional towns,” said Mr Guy.
To bring forward the creation of a ‘State of Cities’, Plan Melbourne will impliment a number of measures, including the delivery of a permanent boundary around Melbourne.
"By establishing a permanent metropolitan urban boundary around Melbourne we will protect the values of non-urban land, give active support for growth in regional Victoria and provide an opportunity to rebalance the distribution of Victoria's population growth over the long term," Mr Guy said.
"Plan Melbourne will ensure that the regional growth plans encourage population growth in appropriate locations. The economic, social and amenity roles of regional city CBDs will be improved by encouraging increased business and residential densities as well as social and cultural facilities in these locations."