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Focus Areas

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Infrastructure focus areas

The high-level infrastructure focus areas encompass the issues that emerged from the consultation.

These are key to the Tasmanian Infrastructure Strategy as they represent the priority areas that need to be addressed, providing the basis for the actions in the Strategy for the next 10 years and beyond.

  

Coordinated Infrastructure Planning

Connected Communities and Connected Businesses - in order to be effective, infrastructure planning must be undertaken by fewer bodies, include greater coordination between sectors and most critically, achieve greater alignment with land use planning.

Focus area characteristics

  • Small population size has the advantage of making coordinated and cooperative planning more achievable than in any other State. However, there
    are presently a multitude of infrastructure and land use planning authorities which make coordination difficult
  • Reforms to the State Planning System and the introduction of a regional land use planning model create an opportunity to better integrate infrastructure and land use planning
  • Regional and local land use and infrastructure plans need to be consistent with whole of State infrastructure policies and plans
  • Infrastructure providers are presently required to go through multiple and often inconsistent planning approval processes outside the Tasmanian Resource
    Management and Planning System
  • Infrastructure and land use planning to be evidence based - good data and geospatial capability are required to support better land use and infrastructure planning

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Effective Governance and Decision Making

Making Decisions Together - the need for a clearer definition of roles, responsibilities and transparency in planning and providing infrastructure.

Focus area characteristic

  • Infrastructure is not an end in itself but can be used effectively to support broad economic and social objectives under the right governance and policy structures
  • There are currently multiple layers of government and decision-making involved for infrastructure provision
  • Infrastructure planning decisions and priorities at all levels are at times seen to be influenced by vested interests
  • There is difficulty in addressing long term planning issues such as climate and population change under current model
  • Current decision-making structures favour expedient solutions that may not be optimal for long-term
  • Economic regulation of monopoly infrastructure cannot always take into account wider community, economic or broader strategic considerations
  • Current limited mechanisms for owners of private infrastructure to have strategic issues considered by government in terms of potential public benefit in contrast to publicly-owned infrastructure
  • There is a need for transparent and well-communicate infrastructure priorities and decisions based on long-term planning with a greater emphasis on cost-benefit analysis

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Viable and Sustainable Infrastructure

Growing our Economy Sustainably - one of the most effective ways government can facilitate increased economic productivity and contain expenditure is through efficiently utilised, environmentally and financially sustainable infrastructure.

Focus area characteristic

  • Infrastructure provision and use is acknowledged in the delivery of the Government's economic development and climate change goals
  • High cost of new infrastructure and the additional maintenance burden it creates means there is a need to ensure existing infrastructure is used as efficiently as possible and that duplication is avoided where possible
  • Adopting a staged approach to infrastructure development can often provide flexibility and enhance sustainable development
  • The determination and pursuit of the most economically efficient solutions for the long term to ensure that there is adequate consideration of alternative forms of infrastructure, including so called soft infrastructure
  • Innovative solutions to infrastructure challenges can be constrained by a business-centric approach by infrastructure owners
  • Need to set aside sufficient funds to maintain existing infrastructure
  • Due to the size of our markets, unique geography and dispersed population, infrastructure solutions for elsewhere in Australia may not necessarily be the best solution for Tasmania
  • Efficient infrastructure pricing will be an increasingly important tool for managing infrastructure demand, and enhancing the financial and environmental sustainability and capacity of infrastructure

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Efficient Infrastructure Delivery

Delivering the Change - the full benefits of effective decision-making and planning will only be realised through contemporary and efficient infrastructure delivery models.

Focus area characteristic

  • With an increasing trend towards and the acceptance of cost reflective pricing principles - public infrastructure provision needs to be provided on a more commercial basis
  • Funding and allocation of responsibilities is an ongoing source of tension between levels of government that has impeded progress towards increased cooperation
  • There is often no whole-of-network-based planning or funding where responsibility for networks is shared
  • Longer-term there will be increased pressure to link infrastructure-related revenue with infrastructure spending
  • There is significant room for improvement in delivery efficiency for road infrastructure - currently there are 33 road management authorities in Tasmania responsible for planning and maintenance of single network

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Leveraging our Natural Advantage

Building the Tasmania of the Future - the long-term advantages of Tasmania such as renewable energy, availability of water, our natural heritage and attractive lifestyle need greater emphasis in the planning and provision of infrastructure.

Focus area characteristic

  • Economic advantages of population growth well understood - Tasmania is well placed for the future: climate refugees, attractive lifestyle, natural heritage but there needs to be infrastructure and planning to support additional population while preserving advantages
  • Tourism and digitally-enabled service industries are long-term growth opportunities and need to be supported by appropriate telecommunications and transport infrastructure
  • Tasmania need infrastructure that enhances it as a place to live, a place to do business and a place to visit
  • Environmental and social values cannot be sacrificed for short-term economic growth, nor can Tasmania be a community frozen in time
  • Need to provide infrastructure in a way that adds to, not detracts from, our environmental and lifestyle advantages
  • The potential for renewable energy generation and availability of water are natural assets that will be enormously valuable in the future and contribute to Tasmanian branding
  • The relative complexity and timeliness of Tasmania's planning system has been a significant impediment to the development of water and renewable energy infrastructure
  • Transport, digital and water infrastructure are seen as requiring a coordinated strategic approach in order to maximise the efficiency and value of public investment

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