NSW Fast-Tracks Next Tranche of Approvals


The $1.1 billion redevelopment of Blacktown CBD has topped the latest list of projects to be fast-tracked for assessment under the New South Wales’ continued plans to stimulate construction and lift the economy.

Other projects picked for the rapid four-week assessment include the $690 million renewal of Wentworthville Town Centre, $384 million towards Kensington and Kingsford Town Centres, and $659 million towards the Central Precinct Western Gateway rezoning proposal.

Additionally, several freight and rail projects worth more than $388 million will be considered as well as a new cricket centre at Sydney Olympic Park valued at $49 million.

“The fast-tracked assessment program is a key part of the NSW government’s Covid-19 recovery plan as we continue to get shovel-ready projects out the door to keep people in jobs and keep the economy moving,” NSW planning minister Rob Stokes said.

Projects will be scrutinised for their public benefit and ability to create jobs, and priority will be given to transport infrastructure and green infrastructure, public spaces and social and services infrastructure.

If approved, the projects could inject $4.3 billion into the NSW economy and create opportunities for more than 8,400 new jobs.

The Blacktown CBD, which is poised to undergo a dramatic transformation over the next decade, will now see plans to rezone land to allow increase building heights and remove floor space ratio controls fast-tracked.

▲ Western Sydney suburbs stretching from Blacktown to Campbelltown, Parramatta and Liverpool could see more than $2.1 billion worth of development applications fast-tracked.
▲ Western Sydney suburbs stretching from Blacktown to Campbelltown, Parramatta and Liverpool could see more than $2.1 billion worth of development applications fast-tracked.

The investment will knock on to the construction of Blacktown CBD’s first university campus, four-star hotels as well as new shopping and dining precincts.

The major redevelopment of the outer-west CBD is expected to generate more than 2,230 jobs.

The first stage of a massive redevelopment of the 24-hectare Central railway station precinct, which extends from the railway station to Cleveland Street, will also be considered.

The area to the western edge of the railway needs to be rezoned to allow for the redevelopment targeting tech firms and start ups.

Atlassian’s recently announced headquarters, dubbed “Tech Central”, will be to be developed atop the new technology precinct above Central Station.

The tech giant plans to build the world's tallest hybrid timber tower atop the former Inwards Parcels Shed—now being used for backpackers’ accommodation as a YHA—on land owned by state government agency Transport for NSW.

Plans for the 3,800sq m site have been on the cards since mid-2018 when premier Gladys Berejiklian laid out plans to develop the tech precinct at an announcement with Atlassian co-chief executive Scott Farquhar.

The proposed Crows Nest Station and over-station development will also receive $177 million for state-led rezoning to increase the building height and floor space controls.

The State Government has proposed the development of three high-rise commercial and residential buildings ranging from eight to 27 storeys high at the new Metro station precinct.

Improved freight rail capacity for south Sydney and Port Botany, the Narrabri to North Star section of the Inland Rail, a new educational facility in Campbelltown and the state’s first hydrogen gas plant have also made the list.

The latest announcement follows on from a slew of recent development approvals, with the first projects touted in late April, with a second tranche brought forward soon after in late May.

Last month, the state government announced that 19 further projects would be considered, including the $1.2 billion over-station development at the future Victoria Cross metro station in North Sydney.

To date, a total of 67 projects have been brought forward with the potential to create almost 40,000 jobs, $17.7 billion in economic benefit, more than 18,000 homes and more than 4 million square metres of open space, parks and land for environmental conservation.

A development application or rezoning must already be in the state’s planning system and demonstrate an ability to create jobs during construction and after completion to be considered for fast-tracking.

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