Density and growth
Why does this area of Sydney need more homes?
Sydney is facing the same challenge as other world cities that compete for global services and products – one where the demand for well located homes and access to jobs is growing by the day. We need to meet this challenge by taking a long-term view and using great city thinking to create a smart city that is liveable and efficient, and supports the trend towards lower car use.
As a first step, we are tackling this challenge by integrating transport solutions with urban renewal. It does mean more homes and apartment buildings in places close to public transport and that are within walking and cycling distance of key destinations. This is only to the extent that good design and planning can support great places to live and work - places that are busy but enjoyable, offer a wider range of housing, and are supported by community facilities, green networks and new public spaces.
How many new homes are expected in Central to Eveleigh?
In our studies, we used high, low and medium population growth scenarios to test the impact of this growth on future infrastructure and community facilities for Central to Eveleigh ( available in the Strategy on page 25). The results of these studies, available from our web site, informed the development of the Urban Transformation Strategy
The planning and design is more advanced for some precincts than others. At North Eveleigh we are finalising our proposal to government for a statutory exhibition of the plans, and the ambition for Waterloo and South Eveleigh are diverse communities with a mix of private, affordable and new and better social housing. This could see an additional 600-700 new homes in North Eveleigh, around 5,000 in Waterloo and 400- 700 in South Eveleigh.
The potential range of new dwellings for Central to Eveleigh is 6,000 – 6, 400, plus any numbers from Central and / or Redfern Station precincts. These are not targets. Each site will be subject to detailed analysis and testing on a broad suite of planning and design issues. We will seek to do this testing in collaboration with key Government stakeholders and particularly with the City of Sydney.
How can you be sure the densities you are proposing won’t negatively impact people’s health and wellbeing?
Higher density in and of itself does not negatively impact community health and wellbeing. Well planned density provides for quality design, sustainable built environments, inclusive and engaged communities, strong local economies and culturally rich places with active street life and connected neighbourhoods, which contribute to healthy and thriving communities.
How can you justify such tall buildings in these areas?
The inner city needs more homes. The Central to Eveleigh Urban Transformation and Transport Program will help to meet the current and future needs of residents and support Sydney’s growth as a global city by considering new community facilities and open space, a mix of new housing and employment opportunities and improved connections across the rail corridor. Increased density also allows us to provide additional community facilities that service the wider neighbourhood. This includes large public parks and restored historic buildings all contributing to more vibrant local communities.
Areas with good access to public transport that are close to employment opportunities are becoming the focus for increased density all across Sydney. The Central to Eveleigh area has underused and government-owned land and is close to the city centre, well serviced by public transport and close to many services and infrastructure, and educational and cultural facilities.
We’ve been working across government to test the impact of future growth on existing infrastructure including public transport, schools, hospitals, community facilities, utilities and green space. This has helped us to identify both the limitations and opportunities for new development in the area.
It is not appropriate to have high rise development along the whole length of the Central to Eveleigh corridor because it would overshadow adjoining properties and have a detrimental impact on the amenity of the area. However, high rise buildings can be located in some areas. In North Eveleigh for example, tall buildings can be placed next to the railway with minimal overshadowing or overlooking of neighbouring properties.
How will you ensure beautifully designed buildings?
We will be developing a design excellence process, most likely for buildings above 10 storeys, that developers will need to follow.
What is a heat island?
Urban heat islands occur when dense inner city environments with a heavy proportion of hard surfaces store heat throughout the day and into the night – meaning that the effect of heat waves is worsened and the need for artificial cooling, like air conditioning, is increased. We will seek to mitigate this effect through our green infrastructure strategy, knowing that more green surfaces help to prevent and manage the heat island effect.
Will privately owned land be compulsorily acquired?
While there are currently no plans for this, as with any major transformation and infrastructure projects, there is a potential for compulsory land acquisition. UrbanGrowth NSW does not have the ability to aquire private land, but where this needs to occur for other government agencies, private land owners will be notified as soon as possible.
The Urban Transformation Strategy
What is the purpose of the Urban Transformation Strategy? Is it a legal document?
The Strategy is a reference document that will help guide the future development of government-owned land. It is an important document that demonstrates how great city thinking can lead to great outcomes when this part of Sydney is considered holistically.
The Strategy is not a statutory document for used to rezone land, instead it will be an important reference document for future more detailed planning in specific precincts. This detailed planning will still need to occur for each precinct to enable rezoning and inform future development applications.
Can I use the strategy to apply for my property to be rezoned?
The strategy will apply to government-owned land. Our masterplan for each precinct will only relate to government-owned land.
What experts have you consulted to develop the Urban Transformation Strategy?
Experts have been commissioned to provide analysis in nearly all key aspects of the strategy. These include community facilities and open space planning, economic development, transport and traffic planning, urban design and planning, heritage and housing diversity, to name a few. These analyses are being considered alongside expert local knowledge from the community.
For more information about resources and other material please visit our library.
What do you mean when you say the vision is shared? What do you mean when you say the vision is shared?
In 2014 and 2015 we consulted extensively with the community on the vision, ambition and ten key moves for the Urban Transformation Strategy. It was important to have input from the community and other stakeholders to guide the development of the strategy.
Of more than 200 participants at a workshop in 2015, around three quarters believed the vision provided the right direction and indicated they would want to continue to live in the area if the vision becomes reality.
Who wrote the strategy?
We engaged ARUP and Grimshaw to help us write the initial Urban Transformation Strategy. They have international expertise. The UrbanGrowth NSW team then refined the strategy through an extensive consultation process with government and community stakeholders.
I heard you changed the ten key moves during 2016? Can you tell me what is different?
We added Waterloo Metro station as a key move – it is a major public transport initiative that allows the complete renewal of the Waterloo Estate. We removed the key move on ‘work and live’ environments as we felt this outcome is provided in part by a number of the other key moves.
Why doesn’t the Strategy have population or dwellings targets?
During 2014 and 2015 UrbanGrowth NSW investigated potential future growth, new infrastructure planning and trends across 80-110ha of government-owned land.
Potential growth on a wider 500ha of land (called the study area), based on Department of Planning and Environment and City of Sydney projections, was also considered to better understand its impact on future facilities on government-owned land.
This work has informed the current Strategy that now has a more defined area of 50ha. The area has reduced in size as some government-owned land originally considered in the rail corridor is required for rail operations in the foreseeable future and Redfern social housing estate now has a longer-term horizon and is no longer being considered in the Central to Eveleigh planning.
This area comprises of five precincts, each with unique opportunities and constraints. Potential new dwelling numbers will be developed and refined as masterplanning for each of these precincts progresses.
How did community consultation inform the final Urban Transformation Strategy?
During its development, a number of major NSW Government policy and infrastructure announcements have been made, including new Sydney Metro stations at Waterloo and Central, the new Communities Plus initiative to renew social housing and the establishment of the Greater Sydney Commission to lead district planning across Sydney.
The purpose of the Urban Transformation Strategy has changed so that it now informs the Greater Sydney Commission’s draft Central Sydney District Plan and will also to be used as an important reference document for future planning in the area.
There are opportunities to provide feedback to the Greater Sydney Commission throughout 2017 on the draft Central District Plan. This feedback will inform our future precinct planning.
For more information about the draft Central District Plan visit www.greatersydneycommission.nsw.gov.au/central-district
UrbanGrowth NSW’s role will now focus on assisting government land owners to plan for balanced development outcomes in local precincts to provide homes and jobs alongside new public open space, community facilities and great design.
Has a transport or traffic study been done for the area?
At the local level, detailed transport assessments will be done to inform masterplanning and rezoning to identify the capacity of the transport network to support population growth.
Does the Urban Transformation Strategy contain details about where future crossings over the rail line will be located?
The Urban Transformation Strategy identifies creating connections across the railway corridor for walking and cycling as one of the key moves that will underpin successful transformation. The potential for future crossings and the exact locations for these will need to be further investigated through detailed masterplanning at the local level.
How have you planned for public open space?
The Urban Transformation Strategy identifies the potential for each precinct of government-owned land, with the exception of the potential future renewal of Redfern Station, to have a target of 15% open space for parks and public domain. Specific details for open space provision will be addressed through the masterplanning in consultation with local communities, the City of Sydney and other government agencies.
Have detailed plans been developed for art and heritage, economic development, open space and housing diversity?
The Urban Transformation Strategy includes a number of strategic directions to help guide future planning regarding arts, culture and heritage, economic development, public domain and housing diversity.
Why does the Urban Transformation Strategy not identify locations for high rise development?
The Strategy is a principles based document with a design principle that the tallest buildings will be built where they have the least impact and taper down in height a they meet existing neighbourhoods.
Specific locations for high rise development and building heights will be confirmed through local level masterplanning in consultation with local communities, the City of Sydney and other government agencies.
Infrastructure and amenity
What about traffic and transport?
Transport infrastructure is a vital consideration of the Urban Transformation Strategy. We are working with Transport for NSW on a strategic approach for the area. This will take into account both local and regional transport patterns (car, public transit and active transport) that impact the area.
Further more detailed studies will be undertaken for each precinct.
Have you thought about schools and health facilities?
Yes, we have provided both the Department of Education and Communities and NSW Health with our population scenarios to test what additional facilities need to be considered in the future. They are able to consider this in their future policy and infrastructure planning.
What do you mean by short, medium and long term?
Each government land precinct has some degree of practical delivery constraint or infrastructure need that determines when development can occur. This means that the Program will generally be staged in short (0-5 years), medium (5-15 years) and long (15+ years) term projects.
When will Redfern Station be upgraded?
We don’t have a timetable for Redfern Station. We are working in partnership with Transport for NSW to develop an integrated plan for this area that considers not only the renewal of Redfern Station, but also development for the whole precinct. It needs to carefully consider a number of transport initiatives including the new Sydney Metro.
The renewal of Redfern Station is subject to approval and funding availability.
How will you pay for Redfern Station and community facilities?
The funding for key infrastructure required to support renewal, including the Redfern Station upgrade, is subject to government approval. It may be generated from the reinvestment of the proceeds government will receive from selling under-used land and assets. Special infrastructure contributions will also feature when large land value increases occur as a result of government providing key service infrastructure, such as the Waterloo Metro Station.
Who will be responsible for building community facilities and who will own them when they are complete?
Community facilities can be funded in many ways.Most of these facilities would typically be owned and managed by the City of Sydney or NSW Government agencies in the future. The best approach will be assessed on a case by case basis.
Have you thought about cycling?
Yes, this will be a core part of the Urban Transformation Strategy. Further detailed precinct masterplanning will also consider how to promote cycling and walking.
Where will the bridges go across the corridor and when?
Creating connections across the railway corridor is one of the Program’s 10 key moves that were shaped by consultation with the community and our partners.
A number of potential rail crossings are being considered, including Codrington Street to Australia Technology Park (ATP). The exact locations of the crossings will be informed by technical analysis and community feedback during precinct masterplanning.
During previous consultation we discussed potential for a crossing further west along the corridor between the North Eveleigh and South Eveleigh precincts. Given the uncertainty around uses on the southern side and construction challenges, this will be considered as a longer term option.
Will an oval/sports ground be provided?
Although we have not identified the provision of an oval/sports ground as part of the transformation, we will be looking at initiatives such as local open space contributions from developers to invest in new or upgraded sports grounds in other locations where space is more available.
Planning for future precincts
How will WestConnex affect the plans?
Transport for NSW will continually assess the impacts of WestConnex through the corridor and manage issues as required.
Will planning take homeless people into account?
We plan to work with the City of Sydney to incorporate any aspects of their strategy for homelessness into each precinct as much as possible.
What will happen to ATP now that it has been sold?
The sale of Australian Technology Park (ATP) is integral to ensuring great integrated urban renewal outcomes for Sydney. ATP stands as an important cornerstone in the completion of an innovation district for Sydney.
One of the key moves of the strategy is to create a centre for Sydney’s growing economies that will lead to a cluster of new innovation and creative jobs, focusing on small to medium sized businesses. We want to create a ‘digital arc’ that stretches from Redfern-Eveleigh to White Bay supporting a vast array of tech industries on the fringe of the CBD.
The plans for North Eveleigh will be designed to allow for this in the future.
Our approach for the Central to Eveleigh Urban Transformation and Transport Program is to reinvest proceeds from the sale of public land back into the local area to help finance infrastructure including crossings, train station upgrades and open space.
What do you mean by future precinct planning?
Government will develop a masterplan for each precinct. A precinct masterplan is a document that outlines how an area could look in the future, and shows changes to buildings, streets and parks, including locations, sizes and heights. A masterplan is made up of a combination of written documents and drawings.
It is important to have a masterplan to make sure that changes to an area are well thought out and made in the best possible way. For example, a masterplan will ensure that new tall buildings don’t result in parks always being overshadowed, and that footpaths and cycleways are in the right place to help people move around easily.
To prepare precinct masterplans, a large amount of research, technical study and consultation must be undertaken..The results and feedbackform the basis of draft masterplans. Once in draft form, the masterplan goes to the Department of Planning and Environment for review. The Department will ask for further community feedback, and may require that changes be made. It is only when the Department is happy with the masterplan that it can be approved and can start to guide development in the area.
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We’re keen to ensure our engagement activities are accessible for people of all ages who live around the Central to Eveleigh area and further afield. We ask people for their postcode and year of birth so we can ensure that, when combined with our face-to-face activities, we are actually engaging a broad cross section of people.
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