NSW will pump billions into building hospitals and schools as the state moves to beef up investment in social infrastructure to complement its already massive levels of investment in physical infrastructure such as road and rail assets.
Unveiling its 2017/18 State Budget, the New South Wales Government has announced massive increases in funding for new social infrastructure such as schools and hospitals.
In particular, the government says it will spend:
- $4.2 billion over four years on building and/or upgrading 120 schools – up 61 percent on the previous Budget commitment and the biggest investment in education based assets within the state’s history.
- $7.7 billion over four years into hospitals and health facilities – up 50 percent compared over the four-year period and also a record.
- $41.4 billion over four years on transport projects, representing continued investment in this area.
In terms of high schools, suburbs which can expect either new schools or major rebuilds include Picton, Sydney Olympic Park and Oran Park.
New or upgraded primary schools, meanwhile, will be delivered at locations across the state including Catherine Fields, North Kellyville, Penshurst, Schofields and Ryde.
The schools will be delivered by the newly created School Infrastructure NSW, which will be tasked with responsibility for planning, delivering and maintaining the capital works program and consulting with communities.
The investments will enable creation of 32,000 more student places across the state and delivery of 1,500 new classrooms.
The new hospital funding will deliver four new hospitals, five new carparks and fifteen upgrades or redevelopments in the pipeline along with planning funds for five hospitals and ongoing funding for 21 existing hospital redevelopments and four carparks.
New major works in 2017/18 include expanding and enhancing a range of services at Campbelltown Hospital and Nepean Hospital as well as a new hospital in the growing Tweed Community, delivery of the Rusty Priest Centre for Rehabilitation and Aged Care and expanding and developing the Randwick Hospital Campus.
Whilst the continued investment in transport represents the most significant item by dollar value, Berijiklian says the increase in social spending represents a rebalancing to ensure that existing investment in physical infrastructure is matched by social infrastructure spending.
“The NSW Government is already building the roads, public transport and other hard infrastructure we need – now it’s time for a huge investment in the social infrastructure we need, including schools (and hospitals),” she said.