Infrastructure Australia says the patchwork nature of local government could make cities less liveable.

The group’s new report - Future Cities: Planning for our growing population – aims to advise to Australian governments on improving the productivity and liveability of our largest cities over coming decades.

The report models long-term growth scenarios for Melbourne and Sydney and assesses their performance across a range of indicators including: performance of the transport network, access to jobs, environmental performance of the road network, access to and demand for social infrastructure, and access to and demand for green space.

The report is accessible here.

The document finds that low density from an uncoordinated government approach to planning would make cities less liveable, straining infrastructure and access to services.

Infrastructure Australia CEO Philip Davies said the Federal Government should considering methods to streamline planning.

“All the Federal Government has as a lever is money, and then it needs to back that up with help in getting the right policies in place," Mr Davies told reporters.

Eamon Waterford, acting CEO of independent group Committee for Sydney, said “there's always going to be tension between different levels of government”.

“Local government does a really good job but they're not resourced or expected to look at the bigger issues about where a train line goes, or where a new freeway goes, or where a new hospital goes, although they have huge implications for their area,” he said.