Monday, 09 November 2020 11:50

WESTCONNEX proceeds must be reinvested in the West Featured

Media Release, 6 November 2020 

WSROC welcomes the announcement of the NSW Government’s sale of its remaining 49 per cent stake in the WestConnex, as an opportunity for proceeds from the sale to be re-invested in Western Sydney’s insufficient transport network.

WSROC President, Clr Barry Calvert said, “Funds from the Government’s stake in WestConnex present a prime opportunity to address Western Sydney’s gaping infrastructure gaps and the decades of underinvestment in the region’s transport networks.

“It seems Western Sydney is still footing the bill for Greater Sydney’s transport infrastructure, while struggling on without a cohesive network of its own. This planning inequity compromises our region’s liveability and is down to a persistent lack of vision by the NSW Government,” said Clr Calvert.

“Currently, there are several funding gaps for core infrastructure in the region – including much-needed improvement to the T1 line between Parramatta and Penrith, travelling through to Lithgow, as well as completing the full Hawkesbury to Campbelltown metro line with the addition of more stations than are currently planned, so that existing communities as well as the region's expected rate of growth can be accommodated.

“The lack of priority in servicing our region’s new and existing communities was made clear with the recently-announced Metro line, linking St Mary’s and Western Sydney Airport.

“The proposed route traverses a large tract across communities in the region but has only two stops in between. Compare this to the number of railway stations for the other metro lines and the inequity is clear. The primary aim of the Western Sydney airport metro is clearly to serve travellers going to and from the new airport, not connecting local communities within the region. 

“The Government was initially able to sell WestConnex at a profit thanks to the Western Sydney commuters who pay $2000 per year in tolls to use the M4; a fee that will be increased at a minimum of 4% annually for the next 40 years,” said Clr Calvert.

“This money has come from Western Sydney residents and workers who have continuously forked out, as the major users of WestConnex. Recent priority projects - such as the Sydney Metro West and M4-M5 Link – only skirt the edges of the region’s needs.

“Reinvestment in the region’s transport infrastructure means simply putting that money back into the pockets of the people who paid for it in the first place,” said Clr Calvert.

“In the face of our region’s enormous and continuing growth, the NSW Government must resolve to invest these proceeds back into delivery of a transport network that is capable of supporting current and future Western Sydney communities for decades to come.”

WSROC has identified several priority infrastructure investments for Western Sydney including:

  • Two north south rail links connecting the North West and South West Priority Growth Areas – forming a rail grid with the Metro North West, Western Rail Line and Leppington Line.
  • Duplication of the Western Rail Line west of Parramatta and improved express services from the Blue Mountains, Penrith and Richmond.
  • Significantly increased commuter car parking at transport interchanges and train stations across Western Sydney.
  • Significant expansion of the region’s public bus network with a focus on connecting residential areas with town centres and Western Sydney’s employment hubs.
  • Increased frequency of services on the Bankstown Line (to Liverpool) and the Cumberland Line (to Campbelltown).
  • Rail links connecting the Western Sydney Airport precinct to key regional centres including: Penrith, Blacktown, Fairfield, Liverpool and Parramatta.

[ENDS]

Media contact: Kate O’Connell or Kelly Gee, e: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., t: 02 9671 4333 

Last modified on Monday, 09 November 2020 12:00

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