Wednesday, 30 November 2016 15:55

Affordable housing targets a step in the right direction

Aerial shot of Western Sydney housing estate. Aerial shot of Western Sydney housing estate.


Media release, 30 November, 2016

The Western Sydney Regional Organisation of Councils (WSROC) has welcomed the Greater Sydney Commission’s focus on affordable housing for new land releases in Sydney.

WSROC President Cr Stephen Bali said “With property values rising, housing is becoming unaffordable for many, even in the outer-most suburbs of Western Sydney where rent can be as much as $500 per week for a modest family home[1].

“If housing affordability is not addressed we will see growing numbers of working homeless in our city,” he said.

“We need to ensure that people on low to moderate incomes can afford to live in Sydney because without them – the cleaners, childcare workers, hairdressers, hospitality and retail workers – our city wouldn’t function,” said Cr Bali.

“Five to 10 per cent affordable housing is a good, workable benchmark to get the conversation started. But there is no reason this number couldn’t increase over time,” he said.

“In some cities around the world affordable housing quotas are much higher. Certain areas of London have 30 – 50 per cent affordable housing. In New York, up to 30 per cent.

“That said, housing governance structures and policy settings in the US and UK are substantially different to ours and it would take time to transition if Sydney decided to go down a similar path,” said Cr Bali.

“We look forward to discussing the details of this proposal with the Greater Sydney Commission in the coming months as good implementation will be key to ensuring this initiative is successful.

“There needs to be assurances that the final strategy will address both affordable and social housing, as well as supporting people to eventually move into the general housing market,” said Cr Bali.

“It will also be critical to ensure that the final strategy doesn’t have unforeseen effects on the rest of the property market,” he said.

“There is no doubt a workable solution can be found – one that works for governments, councils, developers, and of course, tenants,” he said.



Media contact: Kelly-Anne Gee, 02 9671 4333 (ext. 118), 0425 871 868 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


[1] Based on rental prices for a three bedroom house/apartment in the Penrith local government area.

Last modified on Wednesday, 30 November 2016 16:02

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