February 2024

Share:

Click to register to the Airport City Summit

Time to think big for our Airport City

The creation of an Airport and surrounding Aerotropolis, particularly one that is a planned economic centrepiece for a large chunk of GWS, don’t come along very often. 

And while it’s easy to grow impatient, or even sceptical, given the vision and high expectations that have been set, it’s important to remember that while there will be some short-term wins in the lead-up to the end of 2026, the full impact and potential of the Aerotropolis won’t be felt for years to come.  

A grand vision that will take decades is a good thing for the people of Western Sydney. It will present opportunities in construction for thousands of workers, and as it builds, it will attract domestic and international tenants at a dedicated airport precinct.  

But only if government has the right plan to get it done.  

Very few cities around the world get this opportunity, which is why we need to do everything we can to ensure this plan can leap off the page and into the pipeline, while also ensuring investment in other major centres and neighbouring precincts across GWS, including Liverpool, Campbelltown and Penrith.  

That’s why we the Dialogue is hosting the Airport City Summit at The William Inglis Hotel, Liverpool on Thursday, 11 April, alongside the Hon. Catherine King MP, Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government and NSW Minister for Planning and Public Spaces, Paul Scully.  

We will officially mark 1,000 days until the projected airport opening in late 2026, and recognise the progress made on the 10th anniversary of the announcement of Sydney’s first 24/7 international airport.  

This is the chance to re-spark the imagination of global investors and local communities about the potential of this precinct and better understand how Greater Western Sydney is gearing up to take on the world.   

Dialogue Partners' Lunch

Dialogue priorities for 2024

The bold city-shaping agenda continued this month at the Dialogue’s Partners’ Lunch in Penrith alongside business leaders, community representatives and patrons.  

2024 is a year for the Dialogue to consolidate its campaigning on long-standing issues like transport infrastructure, housing, health, tourism, jobs, skills and more, but also branch out as we focus on more in-depth events and targeted advocacy to help support the region’s sustainable growth. 

See our 2024 program below.

Trees a Crowd

In a hugely positive sign that Greater Western Sydney is taking its climate cooling and sustainability mission seriously, data analysis by the Dialogue shows that the region is home to 6 of the top 10 Greater Sydney LGAs for greatest number of hectares of tree canopy coverage.  

These LGAs are Blacktown (#2), Penrith (#5), Liverpool (#6), The Hills (#8), Campbelltown (#9) and Wollondilly (#10).  

The Dialogue spoke to the Sydney Morning Herald about how urban heating is a major issue in our region and that councils that have achieved great outcomes in urban cooling should be congratulated.  

“This hasn’t happened by accident,” Dialogue CEO, Adam Leto told the SMH.  

“It’s been a strategic, and deliberate, attempt to make Western Sydney greener, cleaner and cooler.” 

While the green shoots in the west are a positive sign, it’s a reminder that addressing health and liveability while we ramp up our efforts to address the housing crisis should stay front of mind.  

“If we’re going to be densifying our cities then we need to ensure these areas aren’t complete concrete jungles, generating more heat,” Mr Leto said.  

“Urban greening, parks and mature trees, are not a nice to have, they’re a must have when it comes to the health and wellbeing of residents in Western Sydney.” 

Bungaribee Park

"One out of every two people seeking help for homelessness in NSW do not receive it because underfunded services are full. Right now, just one in 20 homes are social housing but we need this to be at least one in 10 by 2050 to slash the 57,000-strong, decade-long waitlist and end NSW's homelessness crisis".

Homelessness on the rise in GWS 

New data from Homelessness NSW shows City of Sydney local government area recorded the highest number of people presenting for homelessness services, with 2777 people, followed by Blacktown (2753), Campbelltown (2274), Penrith (2254) and Canterbury-Bankstown (2063). 

Canterbury-Bankstown Council has “more than doubled the number” of people presenting to a specialised homelessness providers since 2015, while Fairfield LGA has had a 75 per cent increase in the same period. 

The need for more social and affordable housing in our region is even more pronounced when looking at these figures, which also show large proportions of homeless people are currently employed in some form of work.  

In Canterbury-Bankstown, 24.1% of homeless people are employed, while 21.6% and 18.6% of homeless people are employed in Campbelltown and Liverpool respectively.  

The Dialogue conducted research alongside its Housing Reference Group prior to the pandemic which highlighted that the threat of homelessness doesn’t end once people are in social and affordable housing because of the soaring price of rent in the private market.  

Our research found this is due to a lack of diversity in housing supply. The leap from social housing rent to the private market is a massive barrier to upward mobility, with median weekly rents for new rentals in GWS costing between $480 and $550.  

With rents in the private market continuing to creep up, this gap in our housing crisis must be addressed with more housing supply in both the public and private markets to prevent our rough sleepers being anchored to the streets.  

Leading Engineers Learn GWS

It was a pleasure for the Dialogue to be invited to address some of the State’s leading engineers at the recent Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia (IPWEA) Conference in Parramatta. 

Dialogue CEO Adam Leto explained the background of Western Sydney International Airport and its 60+ year history, how the Badgerys Creek site was chosen with reference to the groundbreaking work by Dialogue Chair, Christopher Brown, the road, rail and infrastructure projects currently underway, and the opportunities that must be seized so the Airport is a success when it opens in 2026. 

He also gave a detailed overview on Western Sydney Aerotropolis, Bradfield City Centre and the transport links that will connect and solidify the Airport precinct in the decades ahead.  

A big thank you to IPWEA CEO David Elliot for the invite and warm welcome! 

Dialogue CEO, Adam Leto

Skills boost in GWS

Congratulations to CPB Contractors on the newly built $80 million Institute of Applied Technology – Construction (IAT-C) facility in Kingswood. 

Unveiled alongside foundation partners, Western Sydney University and TAFE NSW, this partnership brings together leading educators and best-of-industry expertise to help people up-skill and re-skill.  

It’s an important investment that will address skills shortages and increase capacity for our construction industry to deliver major projects in Greater Western Sydney. 

Welcome Accor

The Dialogue is thrilled to welcome Accor as a partner. Accor is a multinational hospitality company that owns and manages hotels and resorts around the world and in Greater Western Sydney. 

As well as that, they are the name sponsor of Sydney’s greatest entertainment venue, Accor Stadium, in Sydney Olympic Park, which has played host to major Dialogue Summits including the Boomtown! Property & Infrastructure Summit.

We look forward to advocating for Greater Western Sydney with Accor, including Vice President Operations NSW & ACT, Nathan Cox, and Chief Operating Officer (PME) – Pacific, Adrian Williams.