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Australian cities’ mobility issues exposed

Whether it be for business or leisure, we love travelling between our big cities. It’s travelling within them that seems to be the problem.

Australian cities may rule most livable cities indices. However, their public transport still leaves something to be desired, a new report has found.


Image Getty/Ida Jarosova


The Arcadis' 2017 Sustainable Cities Mobility Index, which studied ‘sustainable mobility’ in 100 of the world’s leading cities, ranked Sydney (51st), Canberra (53rd), Melbourne (55th) and Perth (87th) all outside of the top 50 cities for transport.


Brisbane has Australia’s best transport system, according to this report, but in 48th position it still appears mediocre when compared to many major metropolises.


Ranking transport on three pillars of sustainability – social (people), environmental (planet) and economic (profit) – the report said some Aussie cities’ scores were “weighed down by a low uptake of public transport and lack of a metro network”.


“Most Australian cities sit in around the middle of the overall Index. A lack of comprehensive underground metro systems and dependence on private vehicles deters mobility in Australian cities, and all have less travel made by foot, bike and public transport than their peer cities,” the report said.


“Greater utilization of urban public transport would improve mobility in cities like Perth and Canberra.”


Despite this, Sydney and Melbourne’s current underground rail projects, as well as one being considered for Brisbane, showed promise.


If you’re a traveller looking for the cities with the best transport options (and experiences), look no further than Hong Kong, which was deemed to have the world’s best transport infrastructure "well-connected metro network" and high uptake of public transport.


The next best transport systems are to be found in Zurich, Paris, Seoul, Prague, Vienna, London and Singapore.


More information, and the full report can be found at


Written by: Mark Harada
Published: 30 October 2017

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