THE Australian and NSW governments and eight Western Sydney councils last week agreed to a landmark Western Sydney City Deal, which aims to deliver a once-in-a-generation transformation of Sydney's outer west – creating the 'Western Parkland City'.
The City Deal builds on the Australian Government's $5.3 billion investment in the Western Sydney Airport and includes measures to support investment and development while maintaining and enhancing Western Sydney's character by improving community infrastructure and liveability.
A centrepiece of the agreement is a commitment from the Australian and NSW governments to deliver the first stage of Western Sydney Rail, a North-South Rail Link from St Marys to Badgerys Creek Aerotropolis via Western Sydney Airport.
Both governments have committed $50 million for a business case on the full North South rail line to finalise a route and station locations and to build on the evidence base of the joint Rail Needs Scoping Study, which was released last week.
The NSW Government will also establish rapid bus services from the metropolitan centres of Penrith, Liverpool and Campbelltown to the Badgerys Creek Aerotropolis and to Western Sydney Airport before it opens.
The Aerotropolis is planned to become Western Sydney's advanced manufacturing, research, medical, education and commercial hub, with land owned by the Commonwealth at North Bringelly to form part of the Aerotropolis. An Aerotropolis Development Authority with NSW and Commonwealth representation on the board will be established to facilitate development of the precinct.
An Investment Attraction Office, to be located in Liverpool, will also be established to coordinate the attraction of national and international investment to Western Sydney and the Badgerys Creek Aerotropolis. The Office will be supported by a NSW Investment Attraction Fund.
Planning reforms are also proposed, with a streamlined and uniform planning regime for Western Sydney to be led by councils through a new Planning Partnership, which will aim to reduce costs for development, boost housing supply and protect airport operations.
Land use and infrastructure planning will be undertaken for a new Growth Area for the Greater Penrith to St Mary's corridor to unlock new housing and ensure it is planned, delivered and integrated with infrastructure.
The City Deal will also create a new Western Parkland City Liveability Program to provide grant funding to local governments to deliver community facilities and amenities that will enable new housing supply.
An Implementation Plan for the Western Sydney City Deal is due to be released this year. It will provide further detail on the delivery of commitments under the Deal, including timeframes and accountabilities. Progress reports on the Western Sydney City Deal will be published each year.
More information is available from the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities website at <https://cities.infrastructure.gov.au/western-sydney-city-deal>.