The distribution of new housing provision in Sydney will be more equitable as a result of new targets that will ensure that wealthier and established parts of the city’s eastern and northern suburbs accommodate their fair share of new housing, the NSW Government says.

The NSW Government has released five-year housing targets covering 43 local government areas (LGAs) across the Greater Sydney, Illawarra, Shoalhaven, Central Coast, Lower Hunter and Greater Newcastle areas.

The targets aim to rebalance the burden of new housing provision across Greater Sydney and surrounding areas as well as to promote greater infill development.

Should all targets be met, 82 percent of housing over the five years from 1 July 2024 will come from infill areas, with the remaining 18 percent to come from greenfield development.

The targets come as the New South Wales Government is aiming to deliver 377,000 new well-located homes over the five years from 1 July 2024 under its commitment to Australia’s National Housing Accord.

That implies an annual average of 74,000 new housing completions per year.

The Government acknowledges that these targets will be difficult to achieve.

Only one time in its history has the state ever delivered 74,000 homes during a financial year.

That occurred at the peak of the record-breaking apartment construction boom in 2018/19, where completions of 74,683 were achieved.

Lat year, the state completed only 48,393 homes.

The targets also come amid concern that growth areas in Sydney’s Central and Western municipalities are being asked to shoulder a disproportionate portion of the burden in terms of new housing provision and development.

This is concerning as established areas in Sydney’s north and east offer the best access to transport, employment, education, healthcare and amenity.

Finally, the target comes amid concern that a lack of affordable housing options  for young people would leave inner parts of Sydney drained of innovative resources and would lead to the city becoming ‘a city with no grandchildren’.

Between 2016 and 2021, Sydney lost twice as many people aged 30 to 40 as it gained.

Toward this end, the targets aim to rebalance the distribution of new housing provision within the Greater Sydney Area.

Under the new announcement, each of the 43 local government areas have been allocated a five-year target.

The targets for each municipality have been developed with consideration of the number of homes already in the pipeline, the number of additional homes which are expected in response to recent reforms in respect of transit-oriented development and low and middle rise housing as well as constraints due to environmental risks such as floods or bushfires.

Councils who take steps to deliver on their targets and improve planning performance will have access to incentives under the NSW Government’s $200 million Faster Assessments program.

The funding will help to deliver infrastructure such as roads, open spaces and community facilities. Details of eligibility criteria will be released in the second half of the year.

Councils, state agencies and utilities will also have access to the existing Accelerator Infrastructure Fund to fund various infrastructure projects such as roads, stormwater systems, electricity infrastructure, sewerage and public open spaces.

Further support is expected to be given through reforms to developer contributions, which are expected to deliver up to $1 billion in new funding over the forward estimates period (four years) and up to $700 million per year beyond that.

As mentioned above, the targets aim to rebalance new housing provision across Greater Sydney to ensure that established locations within the East contribute their fair share of new housing.

Overall, the targets will see Greater Sydney deliver almost 70 percent (263,400) of the 377,000 homes to be delivered across New South Wales over the five years from 1 July 2024.

Within these 263,400 homes, as many of 41 percent or 107,100 homes will be in the Eastern Sydney municipalities (including Ku-Ring and the Northern Beaches).

With such municipalities currently accounting for 34 percent (58,290) of homes in the system, these LGAs will need to deliver more than half (53 percent) of the additional homes other than those currently in the system to meet targets.

NSW Minister for Planning and Public Spaces Paul Scully welcomed the latest announcement.

“These targets are ambitious but realistic, because they’re based on evidence,” Aryes said.

“We all need to be accountable. For too long, housing has been delivered without a plan.

“The new targets make for a fairer distribution across Sydney and NSW, with growth in areas where jobs and transport exist or are planned for.”

Property Industry lobby groups broadly welcomed the new targets.

In a statement, Tom Forrest, CEO of Urban Taskforce Australia, said the targets were the ‘last piece of the housing supply puzzle.

“The targets were a missing piece of the housing supply puzzle. It’s now time for Councils to get on with the job of meeting their targets.

“Urban Taskforce has been calling for realistic targets, backed up with carrot and stick approach, as a critical component in putting NSW in the best possible position to meet the 377,000 new dwellings required under the National Housing Accord …

“… The Minns Government deserves credit for embracing realistic targets that ensure a fairer share of housing.”