Planning and Transport for Healthy Cities brings together our expertise in understanding how cities are planned and designed to create more just, sustainable and healthy outcomes. Current research activities include: urban planning and governance, transport and mobility, critical infrastructure, digital and technologies, health and wellbeing, urban design.

Acknowledgement of Country

Researchers from the Planning and Transport for Healthy Cities theme acknowledge the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation and the traditional owners and custodians of Country throughout Australia. We recognise their ongoing unceded sovereignty to land and waters, and acknowledge the wisdom of their Ancestors and Elders, both past and present. As a group of researchers whose work is deeply connected to place, we are committed to supporting the protection of Country by prioritising respect and care for community, place and culture in all that we do.

Key People

Associate Director & Deputies

Sarah Foster

Sarah Foster

Associate Director, Planning & Transport for Healthy Cities

Chris De Gruyter

Chris De Gruyter

Deputy Associate Director, Planning & Transport in Healthy Cities

Afshin Jafari

Afshin Jafari

Deputy Associate Director, Planning & Transport for Healthy Cities


Higher Degree by Research Candidates


Developing new safe cycling indicators for inclusion: Australian Urban Observatory


Developing new safe cycling indicators for inclusion in the Australian Urban Observatory digital liveability platform

Developing Tools for Knowledge Translation in Transport and Health Modelling


RMIT’s Healthy Liveable Cities Lab’s city-wide transport and health simulation model aims to support equitable access to walking and cycling across Greater Melbourne.

Voicing First Nations Country, community, and culture in urban policy


This research project, funded by AHURI, collaborates with First Nations custodians in major urban centres to learn from and listen to their experience of attempting to engage with urban policymakers intervening on their Country.

Transport Health Assessment Tool for Brisbane (THAT-Brisbane)


THAT-Brisbane builds on THAT-Melbourne, a Planning Institute of Australia Award winning tool for measuring life-time health benefits from walking and cycling.

Packed like sardines: Impacts of the apartment boom on public transport in Australian cities


This project is investigating the impacts of high-density housing on public transport use and service provision to directly inform policy and practice for reducing passenger overcrowding and enhancing liveability in cities.

Innovative responses to urban transportation: current practice in Australian cities


This project investigates drivers and processes of change within Australian metropolitan transport systems to identify future options and directions for policy development.

The High Life: Could apartment design policy improve residents’ health and wellbeing?


The High Life project examines the interplay between apartment design policy, the design and location of apartment buildings, and residents’ health and wellbeing outcomes in Perth, Melbourne and Sydney.

HABITAT: A study of how areas in Brisbane influence health and activity


Designing cities to promote health and well-being: the HABITAT multilevel longitudinal study of Brisbane (Australia) neighbourhoods and their ‘baby boomer’ residents.

Joining Impact models of transport with spatial measures of the Built Environment (JIBE)


Bringing together Australian and UK urban experts to virtually model and test the benefits of transport planning in creating healthier and sustainable cities across both countries.

Communities for Walkability: A citizen science project to connect local spaces and place


Although much is known about walkability, physical activity and health in large cities, new research is needed to understand the unique context of walkability and health in small rural towns.

Understanding and planning for the health and wellbeing impacts of climate change in the City of Greater Dandenong and the Mornington Peninsula Shire

2021 (ongoing)

This project brings together researchers and practitioners planning for equitable health and wellbeing outcomes for all in the context of a changing climate.

People and Place at Minta Farm

2020 (ongoing)

People and Place at Minta is a longitudinal study exploring the long-term impacts of place-making and innovation initiatives at Stockland’s Minta Farm estate on residents’ sense of wellbeing and active connections to place.

Global Healthy and Sustainable City-Indicators Collaboration

2018 (ongoing)

Good city planning produces co-benefits for individual and planetary health and wellbeing

Activating social connection to address isolation in Australia


Australian Research Council Linkage Project 2022–25

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News & Blog

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