White Bay Power Station rethink damages private sector confidence in private public partnerships

10 June 2016

The announcement by the NSW Government that all private sector proposals for the redevelopment of White Bay Power Station have been rejected reduces confidence in the Private Public Partnership process, says the Urban Taskforce.


“UrbanGrowth NSW have spruiked the importance of their call for the private sector to make proposals for the renewal of the White Bay Power Station,” says Urban Taskforce CEO, Chris Johnson. “But after 13 teams have spent millions of dollars in good faith the whole process has been cancelled.”

“It would appear that the brief was just too restrictive with the requirement to only house technology companies while restoring a decaying heritage building and to somehow fund this from very limited new development.”

“The large development companies in NSW have previously had two rounds of proposals for the central area of Barangaroo cancelled and with the termination of the White Bay proposal process, tens of millions of dollars have been wasted.”

“UrbanGrowth NSW should have de-risked the project before going to the market place or alternatively they should have had a more flexible approach to uses that may have led to viable solutions.”

“There is also much confusion around the White Bay site about the impact of WestConnex and future public transport options. This lack of clarity increases the risk to the private sector in preparing proposals but it is very unfair to use this as an excuse in rejecting all proposals.”

“It now appears that UrbanGrowth NSW were premature in calling for private sector proposals and too restrictive with their brief.”

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