Browsing All Posts filed under »suburbia«

TALK | Naming the Shopping Centre

January 20, 2014


The other day John and I drove by Stafford City. John wondered whether the branding had changed. I couldn’t be sure, but I thought this centre had always been called Stafford City. Then it occurred to me that many shopping centres make references to urban forms that do not reflect the design or experience the […]

SPEED | A slower pace

March 5, 2013


Yesterday I took my first walk to the supermarket on my own since my surgery. Over my six week recovery period I am supposed to build up to 30 minutes walking daily. However, I tend to walk as much as my body can stand so am easily managing to walk 20 minutes or so two […]

NEWS | From your place to poor place

August 14, 2012


Picking over this morning’s influx of newsletters, social media feeds and the like, our urban environments seem to be making headlines. In Brisbane, the Council has announced a plan to improve pedestrian experience and public space as well as linkages in the city’s bikeways. In the USA, there are more headlines about sprawl with particular […]

VIDEO | Sprawling from Grace

May 6, 2012


Sprawling from Grace is a documentary feature film about the unintended consequences of suburban sprawl. It illustrates the importance of altering the course of how we develop our nation’s cities. It communicates the dangers of continuing to invest in the inefficient horizontal growth patterns of suburban communities, and details how they threaten to bankrupt the […]

MYTHBUSTING | #2 Whiter than white

February 2, 2012


Recently I’ve started to note references to ‘ethnoburbs‘ and commentaries about the cultural diversity of suburban communities. The view of suburbs as culturally homogenous is gradually subsiding. I’ve written about suburban whiteness in other posts, partly reflecting on my own growing up in an unbearably white suburb and an education system that was a machine […]

MYTHBUSTING | #1 Middle class enclave

January 29, 2012


Having posted some suburban scenarios, it seemed appropriate to bust some myths (as other suburban narratives). First one is that suburbs are bastions of middle class privilege. These two maps, produced with data from the 2006 Census, indicate otherwise showing greater concentrations of low income earning households. One map shows the SLA distribution of household […]

STORIES | Suburban scenarios

January 20, 2012


I’ve been thinking about suburban narratives and the kinds of images, scenarios and stories that emerge. Australia calls itself an urban nation but it’s more appropriate to recognise it as a suburban nation – 80% of us live in suburbs – even post-suburban. Various ideas emerging in the face of population growth and climate change […]

OBSERVE | Suburban informality & the everyday

January 19, 2012


Suburban streets can offer gifts and surprises, the generosity of neighbours and makeshift encounters. A small child offers her old toys and a free drink. A household offers a place to rest and explore on the footpath. A handmade seat in the shade.

DESIGN | Concrete is not streetscaping

January 13, 2012


Recently my mother received a letter from the Council explaining that footpath improvements and streetscaping works would be happening at nights along Gympie and Albany Creek Roads, at the central intersection in Aspley. These works have already commenced, though I am yet to see any signs of streetscaping. All I’ve seen so far is new […]

STORY | Suburban otherness

January 2, 2012


There’s something, for want of a better word, dark permeating the suburbs. I am wary of using the term ‘gothic’ to describe that simmering underbelly of reality’s otherness – genre thinking may not have much to offer. Perhaps it’s the kind of darkness that Joseph Conrad writes in Heart of Darkness (of motives, of politics […]