Progress on the actions of the Greater Sydney Region Plan

The Commission has a statutory requirement under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act (1979) (EP&A Act) to report on the implementation of the Greater Sydney Region Plan.

The Region Plan has 15 actions to be delivered by the Commission, State agencies, the Australian Government and councils. Each action has a lead agency and, in some cases, supporting State agencies and/or councils.

This section provides an update on the delivery of the 15 actions since the Region Plan was released by the NSW Government in March 2018.

1. Identify, prioritise and deliver Collaboration Areas:
Lead Agency: Commission
The Commission to continue to identify, prioritise and lead Collaboration Areas across Greater Sydney. The Commission will annually review the Collaboration Area program and priorities.
  • Collaboration Areas are a place-based concept that the Commission has developed to address complex issues that require cross-stakeholder solutions.
  • The Commission prioritised five Collaboration Areas for 2017/18:
    • Camperdown-Ultimo
    • Randwick
    • Liverpool
    • Greater Penrith
    • Rhodes East
  • In each of these areas the Commission has brought together up to 30 stakeholders, including State Government agencies, utilities, councils, arts organisations, universities, TAFE, local area health services, businesses and chambers of commerce to form a working group. The relevant District Commissioner chaired each group.
  • In 2018 the Commission delivered three Place Strategies which are available on the Commission’s website: Camperdown-Ultimo, Randwick and Liverpool.
  • The Place Strategy for Greater Penrith is pending the inputs on the mitigation of flood risks in the Hawkesbury-Nepean Valley.
  • The Rhodes East project focuses on sustainable utilities and is on hold pending Planned Precinct work by the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE).
  • The Commission is supporting Collaboration Area stakeholders to implement the Place Strategies already delivered, with both the Commission, councils and other key stakeholders providing dedicated resources over the next 12-24 months.
  • Collaboration Areas prioritised for 2019 are:
    • Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) research and innovation precinct
    • Bankstown Health and Education Precinct and Bankstown Airport/Milperra industrial and urban services precinct
    • Campbelltown-Macarthur Health and Education Precinct
    • Kogarah Health and Education precinct.
  • Each of these projects is underway with up to 50 local stakeholders coming together for a series of workshops on such things as movement and place, liveability and transport.
  • An annual review of the Collaboration Area program and priorities will be undertaken in late 2019.
  • Further information is provided at Action Items 8 and 10.


2. Coordinate land use and infrastructure for the Western City District
Lead Agency: Commission
The implementation and governance commitments of the Western Sydney City Deal identify that the Commission will coordinate land use and infrastructure for the Western City District.
  • Since the announcement of the Western Sydney City Deal in March 2018, the Commission has implemented a cross-Government Coordination Committee (agency leads) to bring all relevant agencies together to focus on the co-ordination of land use and infrastructure.
  • Geoff Roberts, Deputy Chief and Economic Commissioner has been appointed Chief Co-ordinator, Western Parkland City, with responsibility to co-ordinate the land use and infrastructure planning. Mr Roberts chairs the cross-Government Committee.
  • Tri-government arrangements are in place including a Leadership Group (Ministers and Mayors) and an Implementation Board (Agency Secretaries and General Managers).
  • The Western City and Aerotropolis Authority has been established and the Board appointed. Mr Roberts has also been appointed to the Board to ensure whole-of-government alignment across all aspects of City Deal implementation.
  • Western Sydney GICs, are also underway to better integrate and optimise land use and infrastructure planning. See also Action 9.
  • The Western Sydney Planning Partnership is an integrated project team with local government that will progress the planning for the Western Sydney Growth Area. The partnership will address district-wide considerations such as common planning assumptions, uniform local government engineering standards and precinct planning, including the Stage 2 Land Use and Infrastructure Implementation Plan (LUIIP).


3. Prepare housing strategies
Lead Agencies: Councils, DPIE, Commission
Councils to prepare local or district housing strategies that respond to the principles for housing strategies and housing targets published in the District Plans. Housing strategies will outline how housing growth is to be managed, identify the right locations for additional housing supply in each local government area (LGA) and inform updates of local environmental plans.
  • Greater Sydney councils have all made progress towards their local housing strategies as part of the Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) program, with many councils set to exhibit their draft local housing strategy alongside or following the exhibition of their draft LSPS in 2019/20.
  • The preparation of local housing strategies is being supported by DPIE consistent with the Guide to Preparing Local Housing Strategies released in October 2018 and the Commission’s co-ordination with relevant State agencies.
  • This has included the Commission’s two-day Agency and Assurance Expo in February 2019 and individual ‘health checks’ with each of the 33 councils in March-April 2019.
4. Develop 6-10 year housing targets
Lead Agencies: Commission, councils
To inform the development of updated local environmental plans (LEPs) and housing strategies the Commission to work with councils and agencies to develop 6–10 year housing targets.
  • Councils are preparing their local housing strategies to inform the 6–10 year housing targets with some commencing community consultation.
  • The Commission is working with councils and DPIE through the LSPS assurance process to understand the housing needs of each LGA and the opportunities for new housing supply in the right locations.
  • For the Western City District, the City Deal requires a 20-year housing target for each LGA. The current work of the Planning Partnership with Western Sydney councils will inform those targets.
  • The Commission and DPIE will review local housing strategies and council capacity analysis in 2019/20 together with councils to develop and confirm the targets.


5. Implement Affordable Rental Housing (ARH) Targets
Lead Agencies: Commission, DPIE, councils
The Commission to work closely with DPIE to streamline implementation of new programs, particularly State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP) (ARH) and SEPP No 70 – Affordable Housing (Revised Schemes). The Commission, in partnership with relevant State agencies, to develop detailed arrangements for delivering and managing the housing that is created by the targets.
  • The Region Plan establishes ARH Targets as a mechanism to deliver an additional supply of affordable housing for very low to low income households in Greater Sydney. A 5-10% target is to be applied in defined precincts at the point of rezoning, as the uplift is subject to a viability test.
  • All councils in Greater Sydney have now been included in SEPP 70 as a first step in implementing the ARH targets.
  • An inter-agency working group is developing a whole-of-government approach to securing, delivering and managing ARH. The approach includes recommendations on a person’s eligibility and the allocation of housing, the applicability (including specification) of the targets, the nature of developer contributions and their delivery, and property ownership and management models. It is anticipated that the NSW Government will consider the findings of the working group in the second half of 2019.
  • Councils’ local housing strategies will include a local needs assessment for improved housing diversity and affordability outcomes. The specific types and number of households in housing stress will be quantified together with future housing supply projects where viable affordable housing outcomes could be achieved.
  • Councils will then prepare an Affordable Housing Contributions Scheme required to implement affordable housing controls in their LEPs.


6. Collaborate to deliver the Greater Parramatta and the Olympic Peninsula (GPOP) vision
Lead agencies: Commission, NSW Government, councils
The Commission to continue leading the collaboration of councils, State agencies, businesses and the community to deliver the GPOP vision. GPOP is being championed as a place for new businesses, homes and services; for diverse employment; for walking and cycling; and to facilitate spaces for arts and culture.
  • The Commission continues to lead the collaborating councils and stakeholders to deliver the GPOP vision by coordinating and chairing the inter-agency GPOP Coordination Group.
  • Parramatta and Cumberland councils have each received $2.5 million to prepare their LSPS which will help deliver the GPOP vision and relevant precinct plans.
  • The GPOP vision is being delivered through two key initiatives being:
    • the Commission’s GIC pilot which aims to support Government decision-making and the sequencing of integrated land use and infrastructure planning (see also Action 7)
    • the application of performance indicators for this precinct is being developed to better understand and track progress in delivery of the vision.
7. Develop a growth infrastructure compact for GPOP
Lead Agency: Commission
The Commission to coordinate, seek expertise and insight from councils, State agencies, businesses and the community to develop a GIC for GPOP by December 2018.
  • The Commission has developed a new collaborative approach to land use and infrastructure planning called a GIC, that aims to:
    • model the growth potential of an area and explore scenarios for its long-term future
    • improve transparency on the need, funding and feasibility of infrastructure and services
    • stage growth to deliver great places as well as more certainty for investors, developers and the local community..
  • The Commission completed its pilot program in GPOP in December 2018 and is preparing the results for Government consideration in the second half of 2019.
  • This is a significant step towards the consideration of infrastructure from a place-based approach and is set to also deliver on Recommendation 1 of the State Infrastructure Strategy 2018-2038.
8. Support the growth of the Camperdown-Ultimo Collaboration Area
Lead Agency: Commission
The Commission to lead private, government and education sector stakeholders in the ongoing planning of the Camperdown-Ultimo Collaboration Area through the preparation of a Place Strategy.
  • The Camperdown-Ultimo Collaboration Area Place Strategy represents the contributions of a diverse range of stakeholders from the tertiary education sector, government agencies, councils and industry. It is available on the Commission’s website.
  • The Collaboration Area Place Strategy provided a foundation and key input to for the Sydney Innovation and Technology Precinct Taskforce announced by the Premier in August 2018.
  • New governance arrangements are being established to continue the work of the collaboration area and to implement the place strategy.
  • See also Action 1.
9. Collaborate to deliver the Western Sydney City Deal
Lead Agency: Australian Government, NSW Government, councils
The NSW Government, the Australian Government and eight councils to continue collaborating to deliver the Western Sydney City Deal.
  • The Western Sydney City Deal Delivery Office is part of the Commission and provides project implementation and assurance, secretariat support for governance arrangements as well as monitoring and reporting.
  • All 38 commitments of the City Deal have been scoped and are outlined in the City Deal Implementation Plan published in December 2018 and available on the Western Sydney City Deal website. Eight commitments have been completed, 27 are progressing and three scheduled to commence.
  • The Western Parkland City Liveability Program Round 1 has commenced with all councils receiving the first round of funding. The Liveability Program supports local projects to deliver and enhance public space, community facilities and urban amenity with total funding of $150 million. Round 2 will open to council applications later in 2019. More information on the projects is available on the City Deal website.
  • Collaboration is also an important factor in the eight councils’ LSPS, to provide a coordinated context for local planning. The LSPSs are due to be exhibited by October 2019 and are subject to assurance by the Commission.
  • The Western Sydney Investment Attraction Office has been established in Liverpool and the Investment Attraction Fund implemented. Investment attraction is also being driven through Memoranda of Understanding. To date, 12 have been signed with national and international organisations.
  • See also Action 2.
10. Facilitate whole-of-government place-based outcomes through Collaboration Areas for targeted centres, including Liverpool, Greater Penrith and Randwick
Lead Agency: Commission
  • The Place Strategies for these target centres, encompassing a whole-of-government approach, have been completed or are progressing as follows:
    • Liverpool’s Place Strategy identifies the place-based outcomes that would support the transformation of the City Centre and surrounds with new jobs, infrastructure, sustainable places and a mix of dwellings for the area
    • Randwick’s Place Strategy identifies priorities for place-based outcomes to improve the integration of health, research, education and teaching to drive innovation and economic growth around the strategic centre and health and education precincts
    • The Place Strategy for Penrith is underway and focussed on sustainable, diverse and growing residential, employment and tourism opportunities.
11. Review and plan for industrial and urban services land
Lead Agency: Commission
The Commission to review all industrial and urban services land identified as review and manage in close collaboration with State agencies, councils and with industry input. The Commission will work with DPIE to review the industrial and urban services land in the South West and Western Sydney Airport Growth Areas.
  • The Region Plan identifies the strategic role and essential value that industrial and urban services land plays in Greater Sydney, and the need to adopt several different approaches to address different requirements for these areas and their associated businesses across Greater Sydney.
  • In October 2018 the Commission released a Thought Leadership Paper entitled A Metropolis that Works, available on the Commission’s website. It highlights the need for these areas as well as the need for flexibility in responding to the changing nature of industrial and urban services, their spatial requirements and strategic value.
  • The Commission has undertaken studies and set up a Steering Committee with Blacktown, Cumberland, Parramatta, The Hills, Hornsby, Liverpool and Fairfield councils and relevant State agencies to better understand the industrial precincts and the strategic needs in these LGAs.
  • In January 2019 the Commission provided councils with an industrial lands database to assist with employment strategies.
  • All councils are now considering their local employment and industrial lands in the updates to their local plans through their local strategic planning statements, as part of implementing the Region and District Plans.
  • Industrial and urban services land is an important part of the planning taking place in both the South West and Western Sydney Airport Growth Areas. The Commission is working with DPIE to ensure appropriate land use planning and inform coordination. See also Action 2.


12. Develop and implement the South Creek Corridor Project
Lead Agency: INSW, working with the Commission
The outcome will be the creation of a cool and green Western Parkland City along South Creek and its tributaries. Water in the landscape will be managed to improve waterway health and the liveability of communities.
  • NSW has finalised Stage 1 of the South Creek strategy, to inform land use planning, urban typologies and water cycle management for the Western Parkland City in consultation with State agencies and councils. The Commission led the landscape and urban design workstream with DPIE.
  • INSW is leading a series of further work programs throughout 2019-20 to provide a sound basis for strategic policy and planning in relation to the Western Parkland City. These include:
    • A Blue/Green Infrastructure Framework encapsulating all natural and physical elements of the Western Parkland City to ensure the inclusion of detailed protection measures in future precinct governance and planning
    • Scoping of a preferred option for a regional approach to waterway governance
    • A biosolids and organics strategy that maximises resource recovery and minimises environmental impact
    • A waterway health and regulatory framework for the management of riparian vegetation, and for the integrated management of flow, point and diffuse source pollution sources to protect environmental values.


13. Develop the Greater Sydney Commission’s role in peer reviewing key land use and infrastructure plans prepared by NSW Department of Planning and Environment to provide assurance to the community that robust planning is being undertaken across Greater Sydney consistent with the Region and District Plans
Lead Agency: Commission
  • Key elements of the assurance responsibilities established through amendments to the EP&A Act and the Greater Sydney Commission Act 2015 (GSC Act) include a requirement for Greater Sydney councils to obtain the written advice of the Commission that it supports a LSPS before it is made by the council.
  • The current assurance program for LSPSs is underway with LEP reviews completed for each of the 33 councils in January 2019. The Commission has also been working with councils and bringing State agencies together with councils to support them in developing their LSPSs. LSPSs are required to be on public exhibition by 1 October 2019 and with the Commission for assurance by 31 March 2020.
  • The Commission has undertaken an Assurance Review of planning in the Ryde local government area. The NSW Government is now considering the review panel’s report.
  • The Commission also has a role in peer reviewing key land use and infrastructure plans which currently includes an assurance review of the Western Sydney Planning Partnership’s Western Sydney Aerotropolis LUIIP and initial Precinct Plans in 2019 to ensure consistency with the Region and District Plan. See also Action 2.
14. Develop performance indicators in consultation with State agencies and councils that measure the 10 Directions to inform inter-agency, State and local government decision-making
Lead Agencies: Commission, TfNSW, INSW, NSW Health, Department of Education, councils
  • The Commission has worked with State agencies, councils, industry, stakeholders and the community to develop performance indicators that measure the 10 Directions.
  • This work included cross-government collaboration with TfNSW, INSW, DPIE, NSW Treasury, Department of Education, NSW Health and Department of Premier and Cabinet.
  • The Commission hosted two Citizens Engagement Panels in November 2018 as an opportunity for the community to help shape the way we measure implementation of the Plans. This was a new channel of community engagement that participants rated highly.
  • The initial indicators are released as part of this publication, The Pulse of Greater Sydney, and are supported by detailed information on the Greater Sydney Dashboard on the Commission’s website.
  • Further work is underway with agencies to enhance the accuracy and applicability of reporting on indicators, with an immediate focus on improving indicators for the 30-minute city and walkable places.
15. Develop detailed monitoring and reporting of housing and employment in Greater Sydney
Lead Agencies: DPIE, councils
  • In 2019 DPIE supported councils by providing monitoring and reporting tools to assist with strategic planning:
    • the Community Profile tool and the Demography and Housing Dashboard include baseline social and housing data
    • the Housing Mapping Scenario Tool that assists councils to undertake housing capacity analysis and scenario testing.
  • DPIE’s Employment Lands Development Monitor is being updated throughout 2019 to improve the mapping and analysis of current land uses within employment land precincts.
  • DPIE are also set to deliver enhancements to the accessibility reporting and monitoring of its data and tools, including improved monitoring of dwelling diversity, jobs mapping and greenfield development, in late 2019/early 2020.