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Geoff Lee and Lucy Turnbull Geoff Lee and Lucy Turnbull
06 November 2016 Posted by 


Making it an attractive place to live

By Geoff Lee
State Member for Parramatta

AT the 2016 Bradfield Oration, Lucy Turnbull challenged the status quo by proposing moving NSW Parliament to Parramatta by 2025.

This proposal certainly captured the media’s attention. Whilst Premier Mike Baird was quick to reject the idea, it demonstrates Parramatta’s increasing importance to Greater Sydney and Western Sydney in particular.

As Chairperson of the Greater Sydney Commission, Lucy Turnbull outlined this strong vision -reimagining Greater Sydney by creating three cities where the majority of people’s homes and workplaces are within 30 minutes travel time.

Eastern Sydney comprises Macquarie Park to North Sydney, Sydney CBD down to Kingsford Smith Airport. Central City comprises Parramatta to Olympic Park and the Western City is centred on the new Western Sydney Airport around Badgerys’s creek. 

The vision highlights the importance of Western Sydney to deliver jobs and homes for the future. Already one in two people live west of Parramatta and one million more will call Western Sydney home in the next 20 years.

No one can deny the importance of Eastern Sydney as a hub for finance, business and professional services, education, culture, entertainment and tourism. Sydney CBD accounts for 18% of jobs and City of Sydney LGA 30% of Greater Sydney’s GDP.

What is new is the change of Parramatta from our second CBD to its own identity as Central City - and its importance to the future of Greater Sydney.

Central City consists of “Greater Parramatta and the Olympic Peninsular” (GPOP), an area of 4,000 hectares which is comparable to the City of Melbourne. It is estimated that 100,000 people already live and 125,000 work in the area.

Employment is concentrated around Parramatta CBD with 50,000 workers as well as 16,000 at the Westmead health and education precinct.

Within the GPOP will be home distinct super-precincts; Parramatta CBD and Westmead health and education precinct, next generation living from Camellia to Carlingford, essential urban services, advanced technology and knowledge sectors and the Olympic Park lifestyle and leisure precinct.

Like Western Sydney Airport, the Westmead health and education precinct is a major catalyst project for Western Sydney combining research, teaching and clinical practice.

We are investing $1B including a new 14 story redevelopment with acute services, surgical wards and intensive care.

This is complemented by the numerous research centres, university facilities and allied health professions that sit alongside the hospital’s services

Health-related jobs will grow from 16,000 to 25,000 over the next 10 years. These jobs are high value and high-knowledge jobs - critical for the development of Western Sydney.

When complete this will be Australia’s largest health precinct.

These super-precincts will be connected by the Parramatta Light Rail. Already, we have set aside $1 billion for the 23km project.

Evidence shows that light-rail rapidly transforms the liveability and commercial opportunities in the suburbs which it travels through, connecting communities whilst having a smaller physical and auditory impact on the surrounding areas.

In the next five years, close to $10B of private and public sector investment will be delivered in the GPOP. A recent PWC report commissioned by City of Parramatta Council forecast that Parramatta’s LGA will rapidly grow at 4.6% per annum for the next five years. With this much investment comes much-needed jobs for Western Sydney.

Whilst Sydney CBD remains the jobs hub of NSW, it is a commuter town with only a small percentage of people living in and around it.

With Parramatta a “central city” more people will be able to live in and around the city core in close proximity, making the city more lived in and dynamic.

We don’t just want to attract jobs to the CBD and have people leave each day on a long commute home – we need people to live closer and be more a part of the city fabric to help it grow as an attractive place to live, work and play.



Michael Walls
0407 783 413

Western Sydney Business Access (WSBA) covers the business and community issues of the Greater Western Sydney region of Australia. WSBA is the popular media source for connecting with the pulse of the region and tapping into it's vast opportunities and networks.