Melbourne is growing too fast and it is risking the prosperity of regional Victoria, the Nationals leader has warned.
State Member for Murray Plains Peter Walsh warned at current estimates, in which 90 per cent of the population growth happens in the capital, Victoria would become a ‘‘city state’’ and not a region of cities.
Instead, he wants a future Coalition Government to change the skewed growth trend away from the capital and towards our regions.
The Coalition launched its interim report Looking Forward 2050: Managing Population Growth for all Victorians yesterday, as Mr Walsh promised it would be one of the key policy planks at next year’s election.
But despite the promises, people will have to wait on the policies to change population growth.
‘‘This interim report is feedback from stakeholders, the next step will be going back to those stakeholders and fine tuning things that go into the final report,’’ Mr Walsh said.
On current trends, Melbourne is set to overtake Sydney as Australia’s largest city in the 2050s, with a population of more than eight million, similar to present day New York City and London.
‘‘We need to set the policy parameters over the next 10 to 20 years so regional Victoria can get that growth,’’ he said.
If the coalition forms government, it would introduce a decentralisation minister to lead the regional push.