The impact of COVID-19 on our cities and infrastructure is long-lasting. The lessons learned from the ensuing economic downturn and widespread social isolation give ample pointers to both governments and industry in the ways we can build better communities. But first, to create stronger assets and build better communities, we need to be conversant with resilience. What exactly is resilience? The Oxford Dictionary defines the noun as ‘the ability to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness1.'
Infrastructure assets must be resilient. Now is the time to create stronger infrastructure assets, and build greener, more fluid, communities so that our assets can be more resilient in the face of any future pandemics.
Local governments in Australia are already working on ways to increase physical distancing measures. With the health and social ramifications of COVID fresh in everyone’s minds, outdoor spaces that offer the option to be with people while still keeping a safe distance are paramount. This includes widening footpaths, building piazzas and plazas, and constructing more cycleways. Such options help with the essential element of lowering greenhouse gas emissions—a win-win for green communities.
Municipalities in outer suburban and regional areas can begin to create smaller, more flexible neighbourhoods with the concept of 15-minute cities2. The aim is to build communities where individuals can acquire all their needs within a fifteen minute walk. By collaborating with businesses, local governments can implement a city vision that fosters a local and healthy lifestyle for individuals and supports the concept of resilience in infrastructure assets for faster recovery in the event of future pandemics and natural disasters. Fifteen minutes cities are well equipped to improve sustainability options among residents, businesses and government departments, with cleaner transport alternatives, increasing the liveability aspects within the community.
If you’d like to learn more about resilience in infrastructure, make sure you register for the Asset Management Council’s annual Government Symposium, Asset Management for a Resilient Future. The symposium will be held virtually and we know you’ll want to hear from experts within our communities of practice speak on ways to build resilience in the face of the pandemic caused by COVID and the effects of climate change. Register now by clicking here.
Join the Asset Management Council and receive immediate benefits, such as CDP points, free access to our database of technical papers and our informative webinar series, reduced rates at our events and conferences, and much more. Learn more about membership rates by clicking here.
1 Sourced: https://www.lexico.com/definition/resilience