Uni student excels

bike-stdMr Kretschmer joined several speakers from Australia, the UK & Nigeria to present his paper titled Spatial representations of walking and cycling catchments: adding meaning through local participation.

Mr Kretschmer is a fourth year student in the Bachelor of Urban Rural and Environmental Planning at La Trobe University, Bendigo and President of Plan B, the University Student Planners’ Association.

Head of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at the University’s Bendigo Campus, Associate Professor Trevor Budge said Mr Kretschmer had impressed the committee.

‘The committee was impressed with the quality of the research, the broader value and applicability of the tools created through the project, and the clarity of Robert’s argument in his paper.

‘Plan B is a dynamic group of young planners seeking to engage with communities in planning for sustainable futures and this team exemplifies the high calibre of students we have on the course,’ said Professor Budge.

Mr Kretschmer said the role of planning in supporting healthy, active and sustainable communities is of great interest to Plan B.

‘In our inaugural year (2010–11) Plan B nominated sustainable and active transport as an area of focused interest and activity.

‘We chose this topic for specific attention both because of the pivotal role that movement plays in healthy communities and the desire to support transitions to more sustainable and active travel behaviour change in the Bendigo community,’ said Mr Kretschmer.

Since then, Plan B has developed a walking, cycling and public transport catchment map resource for Bendigo and produced an online video and toolkit.

‘In May last year, we collaborated with local community groups to organise a community exercise in Castlemaine to test and refine a participatory framework for the MapMyTown toolkit.

‘The project brought together community participation and local knowledge to spatially represent contextual walking and cycling catchments that reflect local conditions,’ said Mr Kretschmer.

The toolkit was funded by Victoria Walks. It was launched in Castlemaine in September last year and is available at www.victoriawalks.org.au/mapmytown.

As well as the Best Student Paper Award, Mr Kretschmer recently received an Outstanding Achievement by a Young Planner award from the Victoria Division of the Planning Institute of Australia.

Mr Kretschmer is the Macedon Ranges Shire Council Transport Connections Officer.

ENDS

Media enquiries

Robert Kretschmer, M 0402 233 358 E rwkretschmer@students.latrobe.edu.au

Associate Professor Trevor Budge, Ph (03) 5444 7230 E t.budge@latrobe.edu.au

Zerin Knight, Ph (03) 5444 7375 F +613 5444 7526 M 0428 463 161 E z.knight@latrobe.edu.au