8 million by 2050 The liveable city?

THANK you to Bob Birrell (Comment & Debate, 4/8) for pointing out the fallacy in John Brumby's assertion that Victoria's growth rate of 1.6% is "about right". I wonder what the public would think if instead of hiding behind a seemingly innocuous number, the Premier explained that this growth rate will result in a doubling of the population by mid-century. That's right, Melbourne with 8 million people by 2050 if our current "about right" growth rate is maintained.

August 5, 2008

All those extra people will have to live somewhere. This will either mean a massive expansion of the suburbs into valuable farmland, or living in a crowded city in multi-storey apartment blocks - great if you're wealthy and can afford more space, but the reality for most will be a loss of the amenity we enjoy today. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions or an end to water restrictions? Pigs might fly.

Melbourne already has the critical mass needed for a vibrant economy and lifestyle. The current third-world growth rate will result in our slipping further down the list of "liveable cities".

Ralph Judd, Blackburn North