The NSW government plans to create a second CBD in western Sydney’s Parramatta in order to deal with the city’s burgeoning growth over coming decades.
The state government has confirmed its intentions to transform Parramatta into Sydney's second CBD with the release for a long-term metropolitan planning strategy for the future of Australia's most populous city.
The newly released Plan for Growing Sydney envisages the development of the western part of Sydney into a thriving, secondary metropolitan hub over the next two decades.
The plan sets ambitious targets for growth of the city overall, with the addition of 664,000 new residences and 689,000 new jobs by 2031, and a projected increase in total population to 5.9 million.
Parramatta will be established as a second CBD for Sydney, while the plan will also create a total of 28 "strategic centres," which in the west of the city will include Blacktown, Bankstown, Castle Hill, Burwood, Marsden Park and Norwest.
Each of the strategic centres will reconsidered priority areas for jobs, services, housing and retail, and be capable of providing employment to at least 10,000 workers.
The NSW government also envisages the creation of what it refers to as "regional city centres" which will include Penrith, Liverpool and Campbelltown-Macarthur.
Specific details on the western Sydney development strategy nonetheless remain scarce, with the state government planning to release more in-depth information on which areas will be targeted following the next election.
According to Chris Johnson, Urban Taskforce chief executive, the reason for paring down of detail in the current document is to reduce focus on local communities in the lead up to elections. Six draft sub-regional plans will instead be issued the middle of next year.
The Greater Sydney Commission, a new government body whose establishment was announced in the middle of the year, will be responsible for implementation of the development strategy across a total of 41 local government areas.
According to Planning Minister Pru Goward the commission will receive $6.5 million in funding for its establishment over the next six months. The commission will initially act as a ministerial advisory body, before being converted into a legislated body next year.
Goward also took pains to reassure councils that the purpose of the commission would not be to supersede local government, but that it would instead be "absolutely focused" on cooperation.