Centralisation: No need for an East West Tollroad – “The changing employment focus of Australia’s cities meant rail services increased in importance.”

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MELBOURNE’S CBD is defining the city – it has become the employment giant sucking jobs from the suburbs, transforming property prices and demanding better rail services to the centre of town.

Melbourne was once known as a ”doughnut city”, because businesses and activity were retreating from Melbourne’s sleepy core.

But now, the city’s changing employment mix away from manufacturing towards financial and business services has meant an increase in jobs in the centre of the city. And Melbourne’s focus inwards has had a dramatic impact on house prices.

In the past 20 years there has been a more than six-fold increase in the cost of dwellings near the CBD compared to the outer suburbs, where real prices have only doubled, according to a new report.

Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese said the changing employment focus of Australia’s cities meant rail services increased in importance.

”The changing industrial structure of our cities means our transport networks are increasingly being called upon to carry large numbers of people into concentrated city centres within a very limited time period,” he said.

Jason Dowling, The Age, 5 December 2012

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