Brisbane must address key resilience concerns to ensure it doesn’t fall further behind domestic and global cities, says a new report.

The City Resiliency: More than just a disaster report from global design and consultancy firm, Arcadis, outlines three key resilience areas that Brisbane must address. It also proposes a number of solutions.  

The three key resilience concerns raised in the report are:

  • Storm and flood events – their regular and significant impact on the Brisbane CBD
  • Urban energy and the embedded network system – the consumer traps that are going un-noticed in new residential developments
  • Automation of Brisbane – how to begin to create a leading smart city

“While Brisbane is the lifestyle capital of Australia it can never become an economic capital until it confronts some simple truths and reinforces its resilience,” says Louisa Carter, city executive South East Queensland, Arcadis.

“One of the biggest international spotlights Brisbane had recently was when its CBD flooded. This just can’t continue if we want to become a New World City.”

“We will never attract the scale of investment that Sydney and Melbourne enjoy until businesses can be confident that the city is resilient.”

A solution the report suggests is a levee from Boundary Street to the Eagle Street precinct. Impacts and evacuations from flooding may still result, but with advanced analytics the levee system has the potential to be scoped and delivered over time with up-front and real-time information available to the community.

These storm events aren’t the only problem Brisbane faces though. The city is also encountering a trend of embedded energy and data networks in new inner urban developments. Additionally, the report finds that Brisbane isn’t making the most of the opportunities offered by the increasing automation of the city.

“Resilience isn’t just about natural disasters. It’s about identifying risks, developing mitigation strategies and ensuring a city can weather storms, both physical and economic,” says Carter.

“Right now, we have profound new capabilities in urban analytics that can assist in evaluating the immediate opportunities for improved resilience in our cities and within our populations. We should apply these new capabilities to our strategic thinking -  like a fast forward button to the future that we want.”

Read the full report here.