A future State Government cannot leave planning of global Sydney to councils

The announcement by Labor leader, Michael Daley, that if elected on Saturday he will develop a compact with local councils on planning must include state leadership, says the Urban Taskforce.


“The Labor opposition have announced that they will work closely with Local Governments on planning matters if elected to government.” says Urban Taskforce CEO Chris Johnson. “It is, however, state government who must lead the policies on planning for growth so that infrastructure provision relates to where growth will occur.”


“While the Labor leader says he wants to give certainty to councils and communities, it is also the development sector that needs certainty as to where the government and councils want new development. Unless Labor is proposing to become the developer of all new homes, they will need to rely on the private sector to deliver new homes and buildings for jobs across the state. With Labor’s proposal to scrap Planned Precincts and spot rezoning there will be no direction on where new growth should occur. We cannot stop all development for two years while a Labor Government reworks the planning system through compacts with local councils.”


“Labor has also said previously that it will instruct the Greater Sydney Commission to replan where new development occurs across Sydney, which will also put all new projects on hold for a few years.”


“What Sydney needs is an intervention into the planning system to ensure that new homes are going to be built for the increasing population. Housing approval numbers are collapsing and even previously approved projects are not proceeding as pre sales have dried up. The anti-development rhetoric from both sides of politics is encouraging communities and councils to go slow on their planning for growth.”


“Michael Daley has also hit out at the NSW Government’s proposals for the renewal of the Waterloo social housing estate by using emotive words like ‘bulldoze public housing to make way for private development’. The reality is that the government’s proposals are to build new social housing as well as market housing to create a more diverse community mix and to use the private housing to help fund the project.  If Mr Daley is against this approach he must either propose not to renew the 50 year old housing or he will need to contribute billions of dollars of government funds into the renewal. He needs to have a fundable plan, rather than just attacking the current proposal that has been worked up with residents over the last two years.”


“The Urban Taskforce is very concerned that a Labor Government will put planning for new homes and jobs on hold for two years while it replans where growth will occur by delegating decisions to local councils who will have no incentive to want change to their communities. This will drive Sydney backwards as a global city.”


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