Review of Sydney planning committee welcome

10 June 2010

The Urban Taskforce welcomed today’s NSW Government announcement that the Central Sydney Planning Committee (CSPC) is to be reviewed.

The Taskforce’s chief executive, Aaron Gadiel said the CSPC had not coped well with the expansion of the City’s boundaries in 2003 and 2004.


“Since the CSPC started dealing with development applications in the more suburban areas of the expanded City of Sydney, it has been heavily pressured by not-in-my-backyard activists,” Mr Gadiel said.


“Local politicians have greater influence over the CSPC than they do over the newer joint regional planning panels established in all other local government areas.


“Sydney is Australia’s only global city commercial, retail and residential development in the City of Sydney is absolutely crucial to the whole metropolitan area.


“The City of Sydney is situated at the hub of the public transport and road network.


“There is no better place for higher density urban development, yet projects can face great difficulties when the CSPC is pressured by resident groups.


“An inflexible and overly politicised decision-making process for state and regionally significant projects leaves all of Sydney worse off.”


The CSPC, which is chaired by the Lord Mayor, decides development applications worth more than $50 million.


“In theory the committee is also responsible for planning controls, however, increasingly key decisions are being made by the Council administration and councillors, rather than members of the CSPC,” Mr Gadiel said.


“The City of Sydney is the only council area where a $100 million urban development project must be routinely assessed by council staff, rather than being dealt with by the Department of Planning as a state or regionally significant development.”


The Urban Taskforce is a property development industry group, representing Australias most prominent property developers and equity financiers.



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