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The Plan Ahead

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Sydney – The Plan Ahead


Sydney is a global city, the premier city in Australia and the economic capital of the country. What happens in Sydney is important to the rest of the nation because of its impact on jobs, the economy and its capacity to produce goods and services that are in demand around the world. A sign of Sydney’s prosperity is that it’s growing – with respect to economic output and population. By 2031, Sydney’s economic output will almost double to $565 billion a year and there will be 689,000 new jobs. In the next 20 years, Sydney’s population will grow by 1.6 million people, with 900,000 of this population growth occurring in Western Sydney.


The Government’s vision for Sydney is: a strong global city, a great place to live. To achieve this vision, the Government has set down goals that Sydney will be:

  • A competitive economy with world-class services and transport;
  • A city of housing choice with homes that meet our needs and lifestyles;
  • A great place to live with communities that are strong, healthy and well connected; and
  • A sustainable and resilient city that protects the natural environment and has a balanced approach to the use of land and resources.

Western Sydney – Key to Sydney’s Success

The current shift in the global economy towards Asia can profoundly help Australia with this task. As incomes in Asia rise, consumption patterns will continue to shift towards higher value goods and services. The rise in the Asian middle class will drive global consumer markets and lead to new economic opportunities for Australia. Western Sydney is well positioned to take advantage of these opportunities and in doing so play a lead role in the integration of the Australian economy into the Asian and global economy. The key advantages of Western Sydney are:

  • First, with more than 300,000 residents born in Asia, the region has extensive family-based cultural connections with Asia.
  • Secondly, with Australia’s largest manufacturing sector located in Western Sydney, the region has the capacity to produce and distribute goods that a growing Asian middle class will demand – not commoditised, low-value products, but innovative, value-added goods and services. The region can produce process and deliver the food demanded by the growing Asian market too.
  • Third, Western Sydney has a large and increasingly skilled working-age population, and world-class education institutions to help the workforce adapt and fully harness the opportunities on Australia’s doorstep.

Badgerys Creek Airport – The Game Changer

The Badgerys Creek airport site is approximately 1,780 hectares (almost twice the size of the current Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport site) and has been preserved for an airport development for nearly 30 years. Planning has ensured the Airport Plan makes the best use of the airport site, while minimising impacts on surrounding communities and preserving land for the airport’s long-term growth.
This will allow Sydney to finally have a curfew free airport, better connecting to the world and resulting in increased economic benefits for the community. It is also ideally positioned to deliver jobs and economic growth for Western Sydney.

Western Sydney Aerotropolis

An Aerotropolis is a metropolitan subregion whose infrastructure, land-use, and economy are centred on an airport. It consists of the airport’s aeronautical, logistics, and commercial elements, connecting surface transportation infrastructure, and outlying corridors and clusters of aviation-oriented businesses and residential developments that feed off each other and their accessibility to the airport. The chief value proposition of the Aerotropolis is that it offers businesses rapid connectivity to their suppliers, customers, and enterprise partners nationally and worldwide, increasing both firm and regional efficiency.

Aerotropolis firms, many in the high-value perishables, modern industrial, and advanced business service sectors, are often more dependent on distant suppliers, customers, and enterprise partners than those located in
their own region. By providing nationally and globally oriented, time-sensitive firms with rapid long-distance accessibility, the Aerotropolis helps them cut costs, increase productivity, and expand market reach, thereby becoming more competitive and participating more effectively in the international division of labour.

The Australian Government exercised vision and wisdom by protecting land surrounding the airport site from residential and urban development incompatible with 24/7 airport operation or that conflicted with highest and best commercial, industrial, and logistics use of nearby property. Badgerys Creek Airport was also viewed as a magnet for Western Sydney business investment and catalyst for regional job growth, tourism, and economic development. Similarly wise was the Federal Government’s decision to follow a “roads first, airport second” infrastructure implementation strategy. Since the new airport will probably take a minimum of ten years to plan, construct, and be operationally certified, this important decision will result in efficient access to and from Badgerys Creek Airport being in place at the airport’s opening. Transforming strategy into dollars, the Federal and State Governments have designated a total of $3.5 billion for new, expanded, or upgraded roads in the Western Sydney Airport area over the next ten years.