THE NSW Department of Planning and Environment has released an interim statement for the St Leonards and Crows Nest Station Precinct, which sets out a draft vision and draft objectives and guiding principles for the preparation of a 20-year Land Use and Infrastructure Implementation Plan.
The Precinct, which is located five kilometres north-west of Sydney CBD and includes the established suburbs of St Leonards, Greenwich, Naremburn, Wollstonecraft, Crows Nest and Artarmon, is identified as a Strategic Centre in the Greater Sydney Commission's draft North District Plan.
According to the Department, the importance of the Precinct as a key employment centre in Sydney, combined with the planned new metro station at Crows Nest as part of the $20 billion Sydney Metro, presents a unique opportunity for renewal and activation
Brendan Nelson, the Department's Deputy Secretary, Growth, Design and Programs, said the NSW Government has been working closely with Lane Cove, North Sydney and Willoughby City councils to plan for the future of the popular precinct.
"We recognise this is a once in a generation opportunity to maximise the public benefits of world-class public transport like the Sydney Metro. It gives us the opportunity to work with councils and the community to develop homes close to jobs and plan for more open space," Mr Nelson said.
"This precinct has been identified by the Greater Sydney Commission as a strategic centre for good reason. It is a major employment hub with one of the most highly skilled and educated workforces in NSW.
"It's important that we build on the strong existing industry clusters already in the area, including health and information technology."
Mr Nelson said the 20-year strategic planning for the precinct will only strengthen the qualities that attract people to live, work and relax in the area.
"Just five kilometres from the CBD, this is already a highly desirable place to live as it is close to a range of jobs, open space, schools and has a strong sense of community," Mr Nelson said.
"A priority is to create a diversity of homes close to transport infrastructure and jobs, while keeping the local character of suburbs within the precinct.
"Open space is vital to thriving communities. The vision will build on existing open spaces, including Gore Hill Oval and Newlands Park, by creating a network of green spaces for walking and cycling."
The Land Use and Infrastructure Implementation Plan is now being prepared to provide a strategic planning framework to guide future development and infrastructure delivery over the next 20 years. A Special Infrastructure Contribution will be developed to fund new infrastructure such as schools, open space, cycle and pedestrian links and road upgrades.
More information is available from the Department of Planning and Environment website at <http://www.planning.nsw.gov.au/stleonardscrowsnest>.