Metro West Rail Line Delay Threatens Sydney’s Housing Strategy

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Metro West Rail Line Delay Threatens Sydney’s Housing Strategy of the New South Wales(NSW) government. The proposed strategy involves establishing several clusters of high-density apartment buildings around the majority of the line’s stations.

According to experts, certain councils have already started rezoning the areas surrounding the planned metro stations, allowing significant increases in population density. However, due to the construction delay, there is a possibility that the local property booms could diminish.

Geoffrey Clifton, a senior lecturer in transport and logistics management at the University of Sydney, stated that there will be developers who choose to pause their projects due to the construction delay. While some developers may proceed with their plans, the current state of the housing market indicates that any delay in providing additional housing will likely lead to increased rents and higher house prices.

Initial budget for Metro West Rail Line.

Metro West Rail Line had a construction budget of $25 billion dollar However, Premier Chris Minns has not dismissed the possibility of either canceling or postponing the metro project, which has already experienced a delay until 2030 and is currently $12 billion over the initial budget. There is an ongoing review to assess the procurement and delivery model for the remaining phases of the project.

According to a spokesman for NSW Transport Minister Jo Haylen, the review will also assess how the Metro West rail  project aligns with broader government objectives, including its housing strategy. The value of housing and commercial developments that rely on the metro line is estimated to be in the “tens of billions,” as projected by the property lobby group Urban Taskforce Australia, which based its estimation on the government’s plan for increased urban density.

Moreover, the review adds more uncertainty to the already unclear future of the Bays precinct in the inner west. While a metro station is currently under construction, there is no clarity on the future role of the White Bay power station, leaving residents in the dark about the area’s development plans.

Duncan MacAuslan, the president of the local residents’ group, the Balmain Association, expressed concerns that without the functioning metro station, accessing whatever developments are planned in the area will be challenging, leaving the community with an apparent gap between the construction site and the empty building.

Also read Sydney metro rapid transit system project in New South Wales, Australia