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Funding residential infrastructure a major policy challenge
Released 10 August 2010

Ensuring an adequate supply of affordable homes is one of the foremost challenges facing Australia today and there are a range of barriers standing in the way, according to the Housing Industry Association (HIA).

HIA Managing Director Shane Goodwin said a prominent barrier is the proliferation in recent years of the user-pays approach to funding physical and social infrastructure.

A user-pays approach means infrastructure enjoyed not only by the new land buyer but also by the whole community and future generations is paid for by a small group rather than the entire community, said Mr Goodwin.

This inequitable funding model for infrastructure is adding considerably to the price of new housing as well as reducing the supply of new housing, but at the same time this model is being increasingly embraced across Australia.

The HIA believes the current funding model is untenable and alternative models need to be considered and adopted. The industry body is convening a one-day summit in Sydney on Tuesday, 10 August 2010: Financing Urban Infrastructure - Australia's Housing Future.

The summit brings together a diverse range of speakers from Australia, the UK, the USA, and Canada to discuss contemporary experiences and consider future options for reducing one of the largest barriers to boosting Australia's new housing supply.