The Property Council of Australia has welcomed the NSW Government’s announcement of the first tranche of 24 fast-tracked projects providing nearly 9500 jobs, $7.5 billion worth of investment and 4400 new dwellings to drive the recovery of the NSW economy.
The Property Council has been working closely with the NSW Government over the last few weeks to put forward key recommendations and a solid list of projects that are ‘shovel ready’ to provide real jobs, public benefits and growth.
“The fast tracking of these projects and planning approvals, aligned with key criteria, will enable the property industry to contribute strongly to the economic recovery of our State once the immediate health crisis has passed,” NSW Executive Director, Jane Fitzgerald said.
Ms Fitzgerald explained the commitment to review and assess the first 24 projects by 21 May was welcomed and noted the first tranche included 16 major projects and eight planning proposals.
“The criteria the Government has chosen to judge projects against – the number of jobs created, timeframe for delivery and public benefit – seem to be the right ones if they are applied appropriately,” Ms Fitzgerald said.
The criteria are:
- Jobs: Does the project create jobs during construction and ongoing?
- Timing: Can a decision be made quickly? For DAs, can the project commence within six months and for planning proposals, can the project proceed to DA in the same timeframe?
- Public benefit: can the project deliver or support public benefits such as affordable housing or significant public space?
“A stronger, more solid pipeline of future work has never been needed more than at this time in this unprecedented crisis. Businesses, workers and families – who rely on property for jobs and to keep our economy moving – are vital to the post COVID-19 economic recovery,” Ms Fitzgerald said.
“Jobs are the number one priority. Projects that have the potential to increase jobs as well as providing significant economic value and the delivery of housing supply and infrastructure in NSW should continue to be a key focus for the Government over the coming months.”
Ms Fitzgerald said it was critical that the first 24 projects were followed as soon as possible by the next tranche of projects and that the next phase should expand the focus of the fast-track plan.
“Many of the projects on the list are very worthwhile large and small infrastructure projects – from the $4 billion Snowy Hydro 2.0 down to individual school rebuilds, and it is understandable that these are in the first tranche,” Ms Fitzgerald said.
“As these are being assessed over the next few weeks, officials should turn their attention to other critical areas of need and job generating opportunities.
“Today’s announcement has a target of 9500 jobs which is a good start on the road to the Government’s target of 30,000 by the end of September, and we look forward to seeing approvals start to be generated as soon as possible,” Ms Fitzgerald said.