At this Monday’s Council meeting we will be considering the City Of Sydney’s Employment Lands Strategy, which looks at maintaining the industrial and employment lands to the south of Green Square in the suburbs of Rosebery and Alexandria.
A very large study has been done to ensure that zoning measures will protect the ongoing use of these lands for purposes that support the Sydney Airport and Port Botany and allow for new and innovative tech businesses to start up.
The zoning will prohibit residential development in the area except in B7 Business Park and Investigation Areas where some development of Affordable worker housing will be encouraged.
The Report recommends 3 strategies for allowing affordable housing which include inclusionary zoning – using an affordable housing levy similar to that which operates in Green Square; Exclusive zoning – which would permit affordable housing where it did not undermine employment objectives and was close to transport and facilities; and by negotiation through Voluntary Planning Agreements (VPA) which would allow some upzoning through increased floor space.
Although this is an exciting attempt to increase affordable housing in the area the Strategy has been strongly opposed by landowners who were looking for a windfall by developing residential complexes when their industrial licenses ran out. These developers believe that their properties have been “downzoned” and will not make the profits that they believe will be realised in the Green Square development.
The Greens strongly support the attempts to increase affordable housing in the LGA and to protect employment opportunities in the area. The Strategy will now go to the Planning Department for Gateway Approval and further public exhibition and the CEO will work to develop the Draft City of Sydney Southern Employment Lands Affordable Housing Program, in consultation with the Department of Planning and Environment and the Centre for Affordable Housing.