July 2023


The Dialogue will support the YES campaign in the Voice to Parliament referendum. This recognises Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as the First Peoples of Australia and reflects our pride that Greater Western Sydney is home to one of the largest urban Indigenous populations in this country.

Why we can’t lose sight of job targets

Adam Leto, CEO

Housing has been a hot-topic in Greater Western Sydney the past 12 months.

It’s been spurred by a shortfall in social and affordable homes, rising rents, and costs-of-living pressures and the simple premise that seems to underpin much of the current narrative and approach to government policy, is “we need more homes.”

But what about the jobs?

For more than a decade, the message from local councils, communities, associations (including the Dialogue) and Government, is how do we create more smart jobs?  We even had targets (check out the Greater Cities Commission’s 2016 District Plans), which included 200,000 for the Western Parkland City.

While it’s a little unclear how we’ve fared against these targets, the fact is, that lost amongst much of the noise around housing, the region is still faced with a significant jobs’ deficit, with many residents still forced to deal with limited access to nearby jobs centres. 

Hopefully improved connectivity across the region’s employment hubs, like Parramatta, Liverpool, Campbelltown and Penrith may help address the issue, but we also can’t lose sight of the importance of our industrial lands either.

These parcels are critical in ensuring our current, and future industries remain competitive, and productive. Much like the housing debate, it’s also vital that these lands also get the infrastructure required to enable their success.

With industrial land supply, particularly in the south-west, experiencing an acute shortage, and with demand for spaces to service one of the country’s biggest markets continuing to grow, there’s a real risk, particularly if Government infrastructure investment dries up, that we’ll lose major corporate dollars interstate.

The message to Government is a simple one, let’s address the housing crisis, but don’t forget about the jobs.

NSW Rental Commissioner Trina Jones

Rental boss can start in GWS

If you take a walk down a street in Western Sydney you are almost guaranteed to walk past someone who is in serious rental stress.

ABS data says that our region is home to 7 out of the top 10 LGAs for the greatest proportion of households that are living in rental stress. These LGAs consist of a population of more than 1.25 million people.

Over a third of GWS renters were living in rental stress in 2021, four per cent higher than the rest of Sydney.

These numbers are eye-opening in isolation, but even more impactful when you consider that this ABS data was collected in 2021, months before 12 interest rate rises!  

This isn’t just a housing crisis, it’s a renting and buying crisis.

Most GWS LGAs have a higher proportion of renters than home or mortgage-owners. For people in our region, they are either locked out of buying a home or locked into rental stress.

The Dialogue is hopeful that policies to address rental stress are a core part of the NSW Government’s plans to address our housing crisis and the appointment of NSW Rental Commissioner, Trina Jones, is a positive step toward providing a voice for tenants to the government.

The Dialogue will be exploring policy options to address the housing crisis with Ministers Paul Scully and Rose Jackson, at our Housing Summit on the 22nd September.

Is GWS Australia’s sporting capital?

After the flame of the Commonwealth Games fiasco quickly died down, the embers of the news rush left behind an interesting question.

Is Greater Western Sydney the nation’s hidden sporting heart?

As detailed by CEO Adam Leto’s op-ed in the Daily Telegraph, GWS has the Olympic Park precinct designed to host the major events, professional teams in all the big sporting codes, and we’ve produced and continue to create the nation’s best sporting talent.

Yet, most people would not pin Sydney as the location for the sporting heart of the country.

Read the Telegraph op-ed to see our region’s national and global sporting credentials. 

Metro West will spawn homes for thousands – that’s why we can afford it

Delivering Sydney Metro West, in line with the Minns government’s election promise to this community, will go a long way to redressing the tyranny of distance and stamping Labor’s credentials as a government that truly cares about the west.

Dialogue Chairman Christopher Brown AM gave his personal perspective on the Sydney Metro West situation in the Sydney Morning Herald.

He wound back the clock to give some context to the transformational potential of the project and challenged government to leave a housing and city planning legacy. 

Read the story here 

Western Sydney must-watch

This month’s must-watch video is the new member for Fairfield, David Saliba MP’s inspiring inaugural speech in State Parliament at the end of June.

Saliba openly described the challenges he faced growing up as the child of a single-mum who fled war-torn Lebanon and settled in Cabramatta.

The 38-year old detailed his nine-point plan to address problems in his electorate, including re-invigorating Fairfield CBD, helping settle newly-arrived families, affordable housing and boosting government and non-government infrastructure.  

Welcome to our new partners

We are delighted to welcome Coronation Property and Mecone as the latest organisations to join the growing list of Dialogue partners in 2023.

Coronation Property has deep roots in Greater Western Sydney and one of the city’s most prominent build-to-rent developers, with an important role in helping address our housing crisis.

Mecone is a leading urban planning, policy and development advisory consultancy firm with their Parramatta offices acting as a springboard to their major work across Greater Western Sydney.

Click to here to complete the survey

RPS Survey 

Social value: How is the infrastructure sector creating it? How can it be included in the evaluation of infrastructure investment? Have your say!

How to include ‘social value’ outcomes in the evaluation of infrastructure investments has been a conversation occurring over many years. Contributing to these discussions, RPS and the Infrastructure Sustainability Council (ISC) released a discussion paper Unlocking outcomes that matter in late 2022.

RPS is now looking to develop a practical guide to support the infrastructure sector in the design, assessment and delivery of social value impacts that are created through infrastructure investment.

To do this, they need your input. If you work in infrastructure, have your say through the sector survey today.