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An outdoor music venue similar to the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles is among the options. An outdoor music venue similar to the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles is among the options. Featured
01 May 2017 Posted by 

10 IDEAS TO GROW TOURISM

Natural assets ripe for development
A HOLIDAY park, outdoor music venue and new cultural events are among the keys behind a bold plan to drive tourism in Western Sydney.
 
Sydney Business Chamber’s Western Sydney director, David Borger, said the number of visitors to Western Sydney had boomed by 49 per cent in last decade – the highest of any other region.
 
Leading a think tank of industry experts and government representatives at the Western Sydney Visitor Economy Conference, Mr Borger said Western Sydney was the fourth most popularly visited region after Eastern Sydney and the North and South coasts.
 
Minister for Western Sydney Stuart Ayers said this growth had spurred a surge in hotel development and world-class restaurants.
 
The Sydney Business Chamber and Deloitte Access Economics unveiled a report of 10 ideas to further grow the region’s thriving visitor economy including a Western Sydney holiday park for families and an outdoor music venue similar to the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles.
 
Deloitte’s Lachlan Smirl told the conference the venue could be built at the Western Sydney Parklands and feature a natural amphitheatre.
 
Other ideas like a month-long Western Sydney River Festival in the quieter months and a Cultural Festival would also drive visitation, the conference heard.
 
And to counteract the region’s poor public transport, the report suggested an “Uber strategy” – connecting Uber drivers with major attractions, visitor information centres and booking agents to help visitors better access destinations and venues.
 
The often regarded “game changing” airport at Badgerys Creek also featured in the group’s top 10 ideas, with the report saying the Western Sydney Airport would significantly expand the region’s economy and channel international and domestic visitors into the region.
 
Mr Borger said Western Sydney’s “great assets”, including hotels and sporting infrastructure, meant the region should be a frontrunner to host the Commonwealth Games in 2026 or 2030.
 
“Western Sydney would be the perfect place to host the Commonwealth Games,” he said, adding: “We have the capacity to recycle sporting infrastructure from the Sydney Olympic Games.”
 
As well as sporting facilities, Western Sydney also boasted 35 cultural arts venues (Parramatta’s Riverside Theatres, Casula Powerhouse, Campbelltown Arts Centre), natural offerings (Warragamba Dam and the Australian Botanic Garden, Mount Annan), adventurous pursuits (iFLY Downunder and Jetpack Adventures Sydney, Penrith) and heritage (Hawkesbury Regional Gallery). 
 
NRMA Group chief executive Rohan Lund said Western Sydney needed to recognise its potential as a tourism destination in its own right.
 
“The assets are already there. The stunning Blue Mountains, Sydney’s adventure capital Penrith, a thriving entertainment hub in Parramatta and the Western Sydney Parklands already have so much to offer visitors,” he said.
 
"NRMA would welcome the chance to invest in a holiday park in the Parklands that inspires, not just accommodates, new tourists to experience the attractions the region has to offer."
 
FAST FACTS
  • Domestic day trip visitors made up 74 per cent of all visitors to Western Sydney.
  • There were more than 19 million overnight visitors to the region in last year compared to just over 13 million in 2012. 
  • Overnight visitors contribute more than $3.7 billion to the Western Sydney each year.
  • The top reason for staying overnight is to visit family and friends followed by business and holiday and leisure.
  • Western Sydney’s top five international visitors come from India, China, New Zealand, Korea and Taiwan.
 
 


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Publisher and editor, Michael Walls.
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