Beyond the Boom - What next for Western Sydney?

Belinda Wallis •
June 15, 2023

A landmark public policy initiative that will help shape the future of Greater Western Sydney was today
unveiled by the region’s leading think-tank, the Western Sydney Leadership Dialogue.

Titled Beyond the Boom, the project was launched at the Lachlan Macquarie Lecture and Pemulwuy Prize Luncheon, featuring hon Premier Chris Minns in his first official address in Western Sydney, and the Hon Prue Car, Deputy Premier of NSW and Minister for Western Sydney.

Beyond the Boom will be chaired by Professor Peter Shergold AC, former Chancellor of Western Sydney University, and Hon Prue Car MP, Deputy Premier & Minister for Western Sydney, will be the project’s patron.

The project will include an extensive engagement program, and close collaboration with both the Federal and State governments, as well as a range of key stakeholders across business, community, sport, arts and tourism.

Representatives from various CALD and youth groups will also be consulted.

Dialogue Chairman, Christopher Brown AM, said the initiative will look beyond the building boom that has helped define the region over the past decade to better understand the drivers that will inform Greater Western Sydney’s identity over the next 20 years.

“The Greater Western Sydney story has been dictated by surging population growth, sprawling urban developments and record-levels of infrastructure investment.

Beyond the Boom will now look to create an updated vision for the region,” Mr Brown said.

“Nearly ten years on from Badgerys Creek being named the site for the Western Sydney International Airport, we have witnessed a decade of unparalleled big infrastructure projects that have come to dominate perceptions and impact decision-making for our region.

“Looking beyond the last decade of the ‘boomtown’ narrative, we will place greater emphasis on the
region’s sustainable social and economic fabric that will complement the physical infrastructure as
GWS grows and evolves over the next 20 years.

“I’m delighted that we have brought together a distinguished group of government, industry and research experts who bring a deep understanding of the region and unparalleled policy-shaping expertise to table this important work in April 2024.”

Beyond the Boom will be overseen by an Eminent Persons Group (EPG) led by Professor Peter
Shergold and patron Prue Car. The EPG members include:

  • Jim Betts, Secretary, Commonwealth Department of Infrastructure
    • Lindy Deitz, General Manager, Campbelltown City Council
    • Kiersten Fishburn, Acting Secretary, NSW Department of Planning & Environment
    • Geoff Roberts AM, Chief Commissioner, Greater Cities Commission
    • Professor Michelle Trudgett, Deputy VC, Indigenous Leadership, Western Sydney University
    • Jennifer Westacott AO, CEO, Business Council of Australia

There will also be a Curatorial Panel consisting of subject matter experts and academics to drive the project’s work program.

A Youth Advisory forum will be convened to ensure intergenerational input.

Professor Peter Shergold said Beyond the Boom was an opportunity to evolve the projects, policies
and issues that have helped define the region.

“Now is an ideal time to examine what the next period of growth will look like and establish an updated and shared vision for the West – a new growth narrative that reflects the modern identity of the region,” Professor Shergold said.

The Hon. Prue Car MP presented the 2023 Pemulwuy Prize to Lindy Deitz, General Manager of Campbelltown City Council, and Amanda Larkin, Chief Executive at South Western Sydney Local Health District. The leaders were both honoured for their “fearless advocacy for the west”.

In a speech recognising women in leadership in GWS, the Deputy Premier, who was born and raised in
Western Sydney, and has been the member for Londonderry since 2015, said:

“Western Sydney is a region I love, a region that I grew up in and as a government we are committed to supporting it in every way.

“It is an honour to be here today to pay tribute to two women of Western Sydney and pay tribute to their tireless work and fearless advocacy.

They are trailblazing women of Western Sydney fighting for
best interests of women in their community and in parliament.”

The Lachlan Macquarie Lecture and Pemulwuy Prize Luncheon was staged with the support of event
partners Western Sydney University, Deloitte and Endeavour Energy.