As Sydney’s north-western residents this week enjoy the fruition of years of planning, development and construction in the launch of Sydney Metro North-west – the project, in many ways represents just the beginning of big infrastructure set to transform Sydney’s west over the next decade.
From West Connex, expected to open later this year to the Parramatta Light Rail set to open in 2023 to the West’s headline project: the Western Sydney Airport which is expected to be complete in 2026. These projects signal big changes for the north- and south-west and highlight the NSW Government’s continuing focus on big spending to support this growing region.
$5.3 billion Nancy Bird-Walton Airport
“Over the coming decades, residents and workers in Western Sydney will benefit from easy access to strong local and international connections and a 24-hour economy centred around the new Western Sydney Airport.” – NSW Government
Arguably the next most anticipated infrastructure project of Sydney’s west is the $5.3 billion Western Sydney Airport – recently named the ‘Nancy Bird-Walton Airport’ after Australia’s first female pilot licensed to carry passengers.
Earth moving works started in September last year; power lines have come down and the Baderys Creek ‘Harbour Bridge (without the harbour)’ has begun construction. A $3.6 billion roads package is underway to support anticipated demand around the airport, including the $509 million upgrade to Bringelly Road (which borders Leppington). There are also plans for a new M12 Motorway, which is expected to commence construction in the early 2020s, and once complete, will link directly into the M7 Motorway from the future Western Sydney Airport.
Western Sydney Airport construction underway
EOIs are now being sought for the new terminal design of the airport, which is being built on a land size roughly twice as large as Sydney Kingsford Smith Airport. Once complete, it will be a full-service international airport. It will generate more than 11,000 jobs in the construction phase, and a further 27,000 jobs in the first five years of operation.
200,000 jobs to come
Immediately south of the new airport is the NSW Government’s ‘South West Growth Area,’ a region forecasted to generate over 200,000 jobs, over the next 20 years. Most of these jobs will be centred within the new ‘Western Sydney Aerotropolis.’
The Aerotropolis will be located in the suburb of North Bringelly. It will establish a new high-skill jobs hub across aerospace and defence, manufacturing, healthcare, freight and logistics, agribusiness, education and research industries.
Recommended corridors for the North South Rail Link and South West Rail link extension
Source: NSW Government
$7 billion North South Rail Link
To provide public transport links to the airport, both federal and state governments have committed to jointly funding an initial $7 billion for Stage 1 of the North South Rail Link. This rail line will run from St Marys to Badgerys Creek and is expected to open ahead of the 2026 completion date for the Western Sydney Airport.
Investigations are also underway to develop a full North South Rail Link from Schofields to Macarthur as well as a South West Rail Link to connect Leppington to the Western Sydney Airport via an interchange at the new Aerotropolis.
The only train station
In 2015, Leppington Station was unveiled to the public. This train station is the only station that currently sits within the South West Growth Area – one of the fastest growing areas of Sydney.
Leppington station – then and now
Leppington is just a couple of suburbs away from the new airport and Aerotropolis and benefits from being a step ahead in terms of existing infrastructure – facilitating easy connections to all three Sydney CBDs.
“As this week’s roll out of Sydney Metro shows, the completion of major infrastructure projects can be truly transformative for a region. For South-west Sydney, undoubtedly, the Western Sydney Airport project will be a once-in-a-generation project with flow on effects for neighbouring suburbs. The tens of billions of dollars being spent is going to be amazing to watch over the next decade, and this will absolutely have a profound effect on the desirability of the area” said Ironfish Head of Property, William Mitchell.
“It ticks a lot of boxes for us in terms of showing long-term potential.”