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Drastic measures needed to meet NSW demand

By Staff Reporter
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Previous Sydney metropolitan targets were almost 50 per cent short for the optimum number of dwellings to build, according to an independent public policy thinktank.

The NSW government has been asked to take “drastic measures” in the light of a housing market facing unheard of supply issues, the McKell Institute stated in a submission to the Sydney over the next 20 years discussion paper.

With a previous goal of 23,000 new builds per year for 2006 to 2036, the McKell Institute has recommended that closer to 45,000 new dwellings a year should be being aspired to.

The lower-end recommendation is for 35,000 new dwellings annually.

However, even the modest 23,000 new builds per year, as per the previous planning scheme (Metropolitan Strategy 2036), saw less than 70,000 new homes built over the last five years, of a necessary 116,000.

“Only two regions in Sydney met their housing targets over the last five years – Sydney’s east and Sydney’s north,” the submission states.

Sydney’s South West, North West and Inner North areas fell furthest behind these targets, with 69, 53 and 48 per cent shortages respectively.

Overall, New South Wales’ dwelling completions have dropped by 48 per cent since 2000.

“Considering that the Metropolitan 2036 targets were conservative compared to other housing targets for Sydney, it is reasonable to conclude that policy failure has been the cause of massive under delivery in Greenfield areas,” it states.

That charges and levies relating to infrastructure in Greenfield areas to undergo review was recommended, and previously mentioned in the Homes for All – the 40 things we can do to improve housing supply and affordability report.

Without these changes, Sydney’s future in terms of housing and prosperity generally will be affected, the submission indicates.

“This is already having a negative impact on our city’s productivity and economic development, not to mention creating an ever widening gap between those that currently own their own home and those for which home ownership is becoming an increasingly unlikely dream.”

A list of 41 inner and middle ring suburbs that should be considered for planning rights to return to terraces is included, with the majority located in Sydney’s South, West and North.

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