Urban Taskforce supports green space funding for Councils

Urban Taskforce CEO, Tom Forrest, today warmly welcomed the State Government’s NSW Public Spaces Legacy Program.

“The announcement of a $250 million program that incentivises the fast-tracking of development assessments with funding for councils to deliver more public spaces is great news for jobs in the property development sector, the environment and the community”, Mr Forrest said.

Local councils that focus on fast-tracking development assessments for projects that deliver much-needed jobs and housing will be eligible for up to $5.5 million each in funding for parklands, town squares and main streets under the program. The program is available to the 68 councils currently participating in the e-planning system.

“It is great to see the NSW Government provide councils with this incentive to fast-track the assessment of projects identified under the Planning System Acceleration Program.

“It is all very well for Local planning strategies to call for greater funds for open space – but this adds to the costs for new home buyers. This new government funding stream which totals $250 million will support the so the acquisition and land and works to create playgrounds and green spaces.

“The approach of providing funding directly to councils to deliver new and improved public spaces will help unlock significant construction jobs during the economic shock of COVID-19 by reducing the “local green space” contributions” paid initially by developers, but ultimately added to the cost of new homes”, Mr Forrest said.

New home buyers are already hit with additional taxes to fund local infrastructure, affordable housing, state infrastructure, stamp duty and significant local government fees.

“This new initiative will reduce the burden on new home buyers and is an important step in ensuring high quality local amenity”, Mr Forrest said.

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