Thursday, 28 September 2017 16:53

West chronicles nightmare commute

Traffic lined up on Western Sydney road. Traffic lined up on Western Sydney road.

Commuters from across Sydney’s outer western suburbs have shared the difficulties of their daily commute during National Nightmare Commute Day on 14th September.

The annual campaign is an initiative of the National Growth Areas Alliance (NGAA) to highlight the difficulty experienced by commuters living in rapidly growing suburbs on the outskirts of Australia’s cities.

Blacktown, Camden, Campbelltown, Liverpool, Penrith and Wollondilly councils are members of the NGAA in Western Sydney.

WSROC President and Mayor of Blacktown Cr Stephen Bali said “Western Sydney is a region of commuters. We travel longer and farther than other areas of Sydney. We have few public transport options and pay dearly in tolls when we are forced to drive.

"This situation is unlikely to change unless we reduce the CBD-centric nature of Sydney by building north-south connections that free-up cross regional travel and encourage economic investment in the West,” he said.

“Over the next 20 years half a million new residents are expected to settle in the north-south corridor between Blacktown and the Blue Mountains. A corridor that has some of the lowest levels of public transport access in Sydney,” said Cr Bali.

“It is a question of whether you want these extra people on public transport, or whether you want to cram them onto roads.

“If we do nothing, by 2036 there could be as many as 600,000 additional commuters on our city’s roads – driving to over-crowded commuter car parks or directly to work,” he said.

“To prevent this congestion nightmare we need a comprehensive transport infrastructure strategy. One that includes roads, rail and everything in between,” said Cr Bali.

Penrith Mayor Cr John Thain said “North-South rail will change everything for Western Sydney by creating access to more local jobs, not just in Penrith but around connected town centres along the rail line.

"It would be ideal if there was no need for a National Nightmare Commuter Day - we know we're not there yet but we're working towards that future for Penrith."

Liverpool Mayor Cr Wendy Waller said that in Liverpool “…nearly 1000 families received the keys to their new homes, while 3530 new homes and residential lots are currently under construction in the growth areas of the LGA.

“But the NSW Government needs to spend more to support the growth.

“Improved services to the city, through the extension of the new Metro line from Bankstown to Liverpool, improved local bus services, and an extension of the south-west rail link to the Western Sydney Airport are the absolute minimum that should be committed to support our growth to create a new and liveable city,” said Cr Waller.

Last modified on Tuesday, 03 October 2017 09:59