New research supports ’20-minute neighbourhoods’ in Melbourne

Monash University

New research from Monash University shows how to transform outer suburban Melbourne communities into socially engaged and resilient ’20-minute neighbourhoods’.

Living within 20 minutes of social and community infrastructure could build communities that enhance social interaction and foster vibrant local economies, according to the’20-Minute Neighbourhood- Living Locally Research Project’ released today by Monash University.

The study was prepared for Resilient Melbourne, an initiative by the City of Melbourne, and the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP).

A 20-minute neighbourhood, is a safe and accessible mixed-use area where key infrastructure is located within a 20-minute walk, cycle or transport trip, or within an 800 metre catchment zone.

Urban Planning and Design Professors Carl Grodach and Liton Kamruzzaman along with Dr Laura Harper (Architecture) from the Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture, identified key lessons and challenges for building 20-minute cities in Australia.

“The 20-minute neighbourhood concept may support local living by encouraging social interaction and a vibrant local economy within a 20-minute walking distance,” Professor Grodach said.

“However, in low density residential suburban settings, it can be challenging to create walkable environments as homes are often physically disconnected from job centres, retail, and entertainment.”

Researchers identified key challenges and lessons to building 20-minute neighbourhoods, by auditing community infrastructure in Mambourin, a master-planned community 45 kilometres south west of Melbourne’s central business district (CBD).

Mambourin is a 115-hectare master-planned community under development by Frasers Property Australia, located in the City of Wyndham,

/Public Release.