“I’ve just discovered my building is covered in flammable cladding”

This article was originally published in The Age on 25 March 2019. Read the original article. Last week I found out that I am one of potentially hundreds of thousands of Australians who live in a fire-prone and unsafe apartment. My five-year-old building has combustible cladding on it. If a faulty combustible panel is ignited, the building could become engulfed in flames in minutes. By not immediately resolving the combustible cladding crisis, government and industry are shirking their responsibility to make our cities and homes safe and habitable. Since the 2014 Lacrosse Tower fire in Melbourne, we have known that flammable cladding is

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Lockout laws repeat centuries-old mistake of denying value of cities as messy places

This article was originally published on The Conversation on 7 June 2016. Read the original article. By Andrew J. May, University of Melbourne and James Lesh, University of Melbourne Sydney’s lockout laws, as well as current and proposed restrictions in other Australian cities including Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Newcastle, are perhaps more about regulating people’s behaviours in cities than about liquor licensing. Such knee-jerk responses to tidy up the mess of complex issues belie society’s need for diversity. They also neglect culture’s debt to the manifold possibilities of social behaviour in urban space. Viewed as part of a broader historical pattern, such episodes of

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