02 December 2013
Apartment approvals are dominating the NSW housing market according to the latest monthly approvals from the ABS, says the Urban Taskforce.
“Apartment approvals in October were 2,620 while house approvals were only 1,684 for NSW,” says Urban Taskforce CEO, Chris Johnson. “The Sydney apartment market is growing dramatically according to the latest figures and our stalled planning reforms must not slow down this momentum.”
“Most of the apartments are located in the inner ring of Sydney where some anti-development action groups are lobbying the NSW Government against reforms to the planning system. Clearly the planning system must support the increasing interest of consumers in living in apartments in urban areas. The NSW Government needs to champion apartment living as a key part of solving Sydney’s housing shortage.”
“Some critics of the NSW Government’s Planning Bill were against code assessable approaches to development in growth areas because it established two different ways of planning. The reality is that we need a different planning approach for high rise urban communities than for low rise suburban communities where there is little change. The planning system must support the dramatic increase in consumer preferences for urban living in apartments.”
“While the NSW Government may take the latest approval figures as a positive signal we believe that they are a response to a major supply shortage, low interest rates and the expectation of a better planning system. Our concern is that the significant watering down of the proposed planning reforms and the potential delay until after the next election of a revised Bill will undermine confidence in getting projects underway in NSW. A transitional planning strategy to maintain confidence will be required if the planning reforms are delayed for too long.”