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Brakes taken off NSW development approvals

Opinion by MERRILL WITT A great leap forward? If you know a little about the history of China, you may have been bemused to read that Tom Forrest, the new CEO of Urban Taskforce, described the recently announced planning system reforms as "a great leap forward for jobs, housing supply and the NSW economy." As […]

Can local character be saved?

Opinion by MERRILL WITT Earlier this year two strange bedfellows, Tony Recsei of Save our Suburbs and Chris Johnson, the former CEO of the developer lobby group Urban Taskforce, joined together to co-write an op-ed in the Sydney Morning Herald that was critical of the NSW Government’s push for more medium-density housing in Sydney’s suburbs. […]

Pyrmont looks to the heavens

By Laura Neill Pyrmont could become the next high-rise peninsula to support Sydney’s CBD, according to development lobby group Urban Taskforce. Last month, the group released a long-term “vision” for the area, which included unprecedented high-rise development to maintain the city’s global competitive edge. The 2040 vision, designed by award-winning Sydney architectural firm LAVA, showed […]

Congestion flows where Rosebery grows

BY ALEC SMART South Sydney residents fear they will face never-ending traffic jams and restricted parking when new high-rise housing developments, currently under construction, are finished. A massive urban regeneration program is underway in the adjoining suburbs of Rosebery, Zetland, Waterloo, and Alexandria, with additional development projects in the planning stage. Once finished, and included […]

Metro draws criticism from transport group

BY KENJI SATO The NSW Government’s revised plans for a Sydney Metro have drawn criticism for being privately run and not integrated with existing transport. On November 16, the government announced a proposal to alter the plans for the Sydney Metro by extending it a further 17 kilometres into Liverpool. This would change the current […]

Big city’s big idea

A one-stop shop to modernise the way the New South Wales Government’s major infrastructure and urban planning priorities are delivered in Sydney is being developed. NSW Premier Mike Baird and Planning Minister Pru Goward announced plans to establish a “Greater Sydney Commission” which could be tasked with priorities such as implementing the Sydney Metropolitan Strategy, […]

Development lobby chides opposition over planning

The developer lobby group Urban Taskforce has urged opposition parties to back the state government’s original planning bill, which is currently stalled in the Legislative Council while the government considers amendments made late last year. In a letter to upper house leaders of Labor, the Greens and the Shooters and Fishers Party, chief executive Chris […]

Calls to turbo-charge local government reform

Proposed “Joint Organisations” of councils should be expanded and made mandatory, the chief executive of Urban Taskforce NSW, Chris Johnson, has said. Revitalising Local Government, an independent report to the state government made public last week, recommends Sydney’s 41 councils be reduced to 18, primarily through amalgamating small inner-city councils. The report suggests clustering Leichhardt […]

Don’t miss Parramatta Road opportunity, say developers

Chief Executive of the Urban Taskforce Chris Johnson says the State Government is at risk of going "weak in the knees" over the renewal of Parramatta Rd. Mr Johnson, whose organisation represents property developers and financiers, welcomed last week’s announcement of a $200 million redevelopment program for the ailing highway, but warned it would not […]