The Changing Landscape of Urban Development and Investment

As our population continues to grow, the redevelopment of our cities is becoming more important than ever. As a result, this growing trend presents a great opportunity for investors to capitalise on. Over half of the current population lives in urban areas, with this number set to increase by 1.5 times by 2045.

While urban growth is an important driver for the economy, managing it is an entirely different story. Cities are constantly evolving and facing new challenges as their populations grow. As a result, city leaders are having to move quickly to regenerate urban areas, providing the basic services, upgrades to infrastructure, and affordable housing for the respective expanding populations. Urban Regeneration helps cities solve these challenges by revitalising unused and underutilised spaces and turning them into places people want to live, work and play in.

This is where savvy investors can capitalise.

Why is Urban Regeneration important?

In a nutshell: it makes our cities liveable. Successful urban regeneration is about achieving additional economic, social and environmental outcomes that would not otherwise have occurred in an area or location, in addition to representing good Value for Money for the public investment

Urban renewal recreates neighbourhoods and communities that may have been neglected due to demographic and economic change. It does so by bringing back character and a sense of place to affected neighbourhoods.

What does “urban renewal” mean for potential investors?

The traditional fundamentals of location, tenant quality, the local market and the economy are still key indicators of an area’s resilience and longer-term performance. However, the factors that meet the needs and requirements of local businesses, the community, customers and tenants are now playing a bigger part in what constitutes value.

The emergence of “smart” and “healthy” cities provides a window of opportunity for Australia’s urban regeneration developments to succeed in building better precincts and more sustainable communities, attracting global tenants and new industries.

Both public and private organisations are likely to invest significantly into property and infrastructure, offering real opportunity for investors to capitalise on infrastructure and property funds. While the world economy is expanding by roughlyt 4.1 percent a year, there is the potential for urbanisation-related firms to grow their revenues by more than double per annum. Policy in Australia and around the world is also increasingly supportive of the move to smart and healthy cities that cater lifestyle and wellbeing.

The push for responsible urban development

Over a century, society has transitioned from predominantly rural to urban settlements. Until recently, not much consideration has been made to how well we understand the impacts of urbanisation on human physical and mental health.

More people in areas means more of a need for more buildings: houses, offices, schools, leisure centres. The challenge then is to design, plan, construct and finance these buildings in an efficient and sustainable fashion.

What people want from the buildings they inhabit will also evolve as technology and demographics change. For example, with the rise of the "Internet of Things", the number of connected devices is forecast to reach 25 billion globally by 2026. This then fuels demand for high powered internet. In the same way, as the world population ages and urban density rises, lifts and other accessible features will come into higher demand, and so on.

As the world moves into more of a health and environmental conscious mindset, these elements of development become more significant to how urban development is approached on a global scale.

How can urbanisation be shaped to mitigate and adapt to climate change while protecting human health and reducing social and health inequalities?

  • Urban environmental sustainability - to encourage revitalisation and transition of urban areas and cities to improve liveability, promote innovation and reduce environmental impacts while maximising economic and social co-benefits.
  • Salutogenic design - that focuses on the positive impact of design on human health. It's a measurable aspect of design that can help a building's inhabitants operate at their peak performance.

The team at Ozland Group Solutions understands the value in embracing the new way forward in the cities, communities and buildings around us. Continuing to innovate is crucial for the future of our increasingly urban world, where efficiency, sustainability and wellbeing go hand-in-hand.

If you would like to talk about how we can help your asset keep up with the ever changing landscape of urban development and the management thereof, get in touch. We’d love to help out.

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