Re: the above problems point to one root cause
@Richard; last para is exactly the point of what Old Canberra town centers were, a few office blocks surrounded by housing suburbs. The office blocks also have a mall and a selection of cafes and baristas so basic daily needs are met. No high density concrete canyons, no need for incredible electricity, water and sewer capacity as required for the Stalinist concrete high density future slums that greenies love.
People tended to buy houses near where they worked so over time, whole suburbs tended to have maybe 3 significant employers co-located. Simplified bus route planning even.