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Sydney Benefits from Strong Budget

Release Date: 21/06/2016
The Sydney Business Chamber has endorsed the opportunity the strong Budget has given to enhancing Sydney’s cultural and sporting infrastructure.
Patricia Forsythe, Executive Director of the Sydney Business Chamber said, “Aspects of today’s budget are the icing on the cake for Sydney.
“Addressing key issues such as transport congestion and the impact of the strong net population growth are fundamental to Sydney’s capacity to be a competitive economy but only rarely in the budget cycle does the government have the opportunity to enhance the infrastructure that underpins a liveable community and today is one of those days.
“The commitment of $129 million over four years to the Walsh Bay Arts Precinct together with capital funding to the Sydney Opera House, Taronga Zoo, Museums and Historic Houses is essential to Sydney’ capacity to be able to grow its visitor economy through growing its reputation as a ‘city of the arts’.
“Sydney has already demonstrated the pulling power of a program such as Vivid which has enhanced Sydney’s reputation as a city of culture. Today’s budget builds on that opportunity.
“With the Eastern Sydney economy anchored in the service sector from key banking and finance hubs to retail and tourism, it is vital the government maintains a commitment to refreshing key cultural facilities.
“This budget has presented a unique opportunity to enhance Sydney’s cultural facilities which is important not only as part of liveable Sydney but important to the Visitor Economy,” Mrs Forsythe said.
Western Sydney Director of the Sydney Business Chamber, David Borger said, “Western Sydney has been held back by lack of access to jobs and lack of investment in the region’s transport and infrastructure but this Budget provides a good platform for connecting the residents and businesses of Western Sydney to jobs.
“The almost $500 million dedicated to upgrading Western Sydney’s roads will go a long way towards easing congestion and ensuring the nearly 300,000 people in Western Sydney who travel more than 45 minutes to work each day can access jobs more easily.
“However, we need to start planning for other Western Sydney road improvements like completing Badgally Road at Campbelltown. This is a vital link which will connect the Growth Centre to the Campbelltown CBD.
“The $64 million dedicated for planning and preparatory works for the Parramatta Light Rail project is an advocacy win for the Chamber with development of the line the key to fixing the Olympic Park legacy, as well as ‘super charging’ jobs growth for the corridor.
“Western Sydney is already home to over 45% of all Sydney residents and the region is expected to grow substantially faster than other areas of Sydney over the next 20 years.
“This growing population is substantially younger than the rest of Sydney and therefore the investment health and education is vital.
“In the next five years 20,000 new residents will move to Parramatta so spending on new and upgraded Parramatta schools for up to 3,000 students is a sound investment.
“The almost $100 million towards the $900 million Westmead Redevelopment is a welcome investment as the Westmead Precinct will provide the foundation for knowledge jobs in Western Sydney and greater Sydney,” said Mr Borger.
Media contact: Patricia Forsythe 0418 165 466, David Borger 0408 239 262 or Kate Bryant 0424 186 367

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