With Australia’s mass immigration policy forcing people to live in high density apartments rather than traditional houses, a new study by the University of Queensland has found that the loss of backyards is harming children’s health:
The steadily shrinking backyard in Australia could be having an effect on how much exercise children get, new research suggests…
“What stood out to us was that the batters tended to have smaller yards than the other groups of kids,” Dr Moss said.
“And given they had no fixed equipment, there seemed to be a strong correlation there that if you don’t have a yard big enough to put that fixed equipment in, it’s hard to provide it for your kids”…
“Our backyards are getting smaller, and houses are taking up more space on smaller blocks, we really need to think about the urban design of our neighbourhoods,” she said…
It comes as rates of childhood obesity climb… Australian backyards were about 150 square metres on average up until the 1980s, at which point the average size began to shrink. Today, it is below 50 square metres.
In Australia’s major cities backyards are disappearing at an alarming rate as their populations swell. For example, the Urban Taskforce projects that only one quarter of dwellings across Sydney will be detached houses by 2057, down from 55% in 2016:
So basically, Sydney is facing a future where only the wealthiest residents will be able to afford a detached house with a backyard. By contrast, the working classes will be forced to live like sardines renting high-rise apartments.
Is this the future that we want to bestow on future generations?