New South Wales is fast-tracking more than $12.8 billion worth of projects in order to speed up the state’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 shut down.
The idea behind these rapid approvals is simple: push money and jobs into the economy, and the economy will bounce back more quickly and in better shape. The goal is to provide as many jobs as possible (across the two stages already announced, there is estimated to be at least 45,000 job spaces), while getting the state into tip-top shape in the coming years.
Many of the projects that have been given approval have been in talks for years now (for example, Snowy Hydro 2.0), and it would seem that the NSW Government has merely cut some red tape to get them over the line more quickly. Some developers have been offered incentives to begin a project sooner than expected. It is a pleasant reminder how quickly our bureaucracy can move when they are suitably motivated.
The first tranche of “shovel-ready” projects includes 24 different projects across residential and industrial sectors. Malcolm Turnbull’s pet project Snowy Hydro 2.0 — a $4.6 billion injection by itself — along with 4,441 new homes and the $1.5 billion redevelopment of the Mt Druitt CBD forms the core of the first tranche. A large portion of the 1,000-odd affordable homes included in the list come from the Land and Housing Corporation’s $1.8 billion Ivanhoe Estate masterplan. A new school in Ryde also features, along with the University of Newcastle’s Honeysuck Campus (Stage 1A) and the Palmers Island Marine Based Industry centre. A full list of the fast-tracked projects in Trache One is available here.
Trache Two focuses on more residential projects. Worth a total of $5.3 billion, trance two includes the $2.6 billion Mamre rezoning plans in Western Sydney’s Aerotropolis. This project alone spans 850 hectares, making it one of the largest on the list. The draft rezoning package for Mamre Road Precinct was on exhibition between November and December last year, and is backed by a heavyweight development consortium comprising Mirvac, Frasers Property, Fife Capitol, Dexus, Stockland, GPT Group and ESR. The relocation of the Sydney Fish Markets also form part of tranche two. There will also be eight projects suggested by the private sector such as Mirvac’s $151 million proposal in the Hills Shire, along with the Fairfield council’s plans for its $326 million urban renewal of the Villawood Town centre. The second batch of projects is touted to provide more than 15,000 jobs, and more than 3,600 new homes, explained Premier Gladys Berejiklian in Friday’s announcement. A full list of fast-tracked projects is available here.
For property investors and owner-occupiers alike, this is fantastic news. New projects mean new developments in different areas, which increases the number of available properties. Owner-occupiers may be able to find the home of their dreams far closer to work, for example. Investors may benefit from the many workers spread across these projects who will temporarily move while completing the job. With this in mind, it’s time to be shrewd: if you’re planning on investing, do your research well and find the ideal spot based on the number and type of jobs that will be in that area. If you’re planning on buying your future home, remember to take your future goals into account — for example, if you plan on having children, you may want to pick a property close to a newer school so you fall into that catchment zone.