To help create sustainable and inclusive cities, we invest in and publish research and perspectives on a range of topics from inclusive community engagement to cities that work for women, designing for ageing communities, and designing for urban childhoods. These research areas are vital for helping people enjoy and feel safe in cities.
While research from various countries identifies how public spaces can be dangerous and exclusionary for LGBTIQ+ individuals, families and communities, we lack research on how to make public spaces safe, welcoming and inclusive for members of the LGBTIQ+ community.
Queering Cities in Australia is a collaborative research project between Arup, Maridulu Budyari Gumal Healthy Urban Environments Collaboratory, Western Sydney University, the University of Technology Sydney, and the University of New South Wales. Queering Cities in Australia follows the report Queering Public Space, a collaboration between Arup and the University of Westminster (UK).
The research focuses on Australia’s three largest cities, Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, and examines their policies and practices for accommodating LGBTIQ+ individuals, families and communities within each local government area.
Inclusivity is critical for providing secure access to public spaces, which underpin many aspects of health and wellbeing, including:
A sense of self-security when out and about in public spaces
Safe access to social networks and interaction
Safe access to employment and education opportunities
The use of open spaces (e.g. parks) for therapeutic and recreational purposes
In this publication, we seek to answer the question ‘How could we make public spaces more inclusive for LGBTIQ+ individuals, families and communities through better accommodation in policy and practice for local areas?’