The Western Sydney Leadership Dialogue is encouraged by the Federal Opposition’s renewed commitment to a rail link connecting north and south-west Sydney via Badgerys Creek, and has called on the Federal Government to follow suit in its City Deals proposal.
Dialogue Chairman Christopher Brown AM, who met with Federal Opposition Infrastructure Spokesman Anthony Albanese last week, said today’s announcement to secure a north-south rail corridor and provide $400m towards an extension of the south-west rail link, was critical, given the area’s forecast growth.
“This is the missing link in Sydney’s transport network – the north-south spine that links to all of our key growth and employment areas,” Mr Brown said.
“These are also the same precincts that are expected to house the majority of Western Sydney’s new residents over the next 20 years. If we have learnt anything from our planning and transport mistakes of the past, it is that we cannot continue to build homes without providing the necessary supporting infrastructure to ensure smart jobs will follow.”
The Dialogue has been a strong advocate for a north-south rail connection, having helped form the Western Sydney Rail Alliance with local councils and land owners, to build a business case for the urban transformation opportunity that this rail link would present.
Mr Brown said that the work that the Alliance had undertaken over the past 18 months had helped raise awareness of the current access issues faced by residents in areas such as Campbelltown, Oran Park, Marsden Park and Camden, and outlined how improved transport connections could catalyse the growth of more smart jobs, homes and improved amenity.
“We’re pleased that the growth areas of Greater Western Sydney, and how they connect to Badgerys Creek Airport, are on the radar of both sides of Government,” he said.
“Before we get carried away with direct rail links to Circular Quay, we need to ensure the people of Penrith, Liverpool, Blacktown, and Campbelltown can get to and from our new airport.
“Of course it is going to cost a lot more than $400 million from the Commonwealth to help build this line and these communities - but it’s a good start,” Mr Brown concluded.