Parramatta 2035: Vibrant, Sustainable, Global

A report that will help guide Greater Parramatta’s potential to become a truly ‘global’ city has been released. The report by Western Sydney University (WSU) entitled Parramatta 2035: Vibrant, Sustainable, Global, proposes a series of key recommendations.

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A report that will help guide Greater Parramatta’s potential to become a truly ‘global’ city has been released. The report by Western Sydney University (WSU) entitled Parramatta 2035: Vibrant, Sustainable, Global, proposes a series of key recommendations.

Released by NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet as part of the official opening of Western Sydney University’s new Engineering Innovation Hub in Parramatta, the report details a vision to push Parramatta forward. Authored by the University’s Vice-chancellor and President, Professor Barney Glover AO, and the University’s Centre for Western Sydney, it includes 12 recommendations to government.

Also known as the Glover Review, it was commissioned by the NSW Government.

In the Forward of the Report, Barney Glover highlighted many of the City’s recent achievements, saying, “Parramatta is a city in a state of acceleration. The past five years alone have seen Parramatta Square emerge and redefine the cityscape. A world-class museum, in the Powerhouse, is under construction. A new light rail network is traversing the city. Internationally recognised research and health expertise is coalescing at Westmead, soon to be linked to a wider technology ecosystem by a rapid metro connection. And a young, diverse and ambitious population is driving an educational, cultural and socioeconomic transformation.” 

The report provides 12 major recommendations to government, backed by detailed policy and planning actions to transform Greater Parramatta. WSU based the report on important business and industry-related information, combined with community consultation. The report details a vision to push Parramatta forward into the future as a globally recognised city that is also sustainable and connected to all its communities.

City of Parramatta Lord Mayor, Donna Davis said of the report, “I welcome acknowledgement that engagement with local government will be critical to implement the vision. [The] former CEO and I were consulted on this report so it's pleasing that many of these ideas reflect council’s policies and plans.

“I’m keen to read the report in full, but some interesting points jump out today:

  • The potential to position Parramatta as a major destination is achievable with the right planning and investment. This is the time to put Parramatta on the map as a key cultural, sporting and entertainment destination.
  • It elevates key Council initiatives - making Parramatta River swimmable by 2025, supporting new and upgraded Green Grid links, enhancing Parramatta Park as the centrepiece of our city to improve liveability and ensure our unique environment is preserved for future generations.
  • Acknowledging that improving public and active transport connectivity is critical to our success as a City to live, work and visit.
  • The economic and cultural benefits of protecting our natural and built heritage are highlighted.

“Importantly, the Review identifies housing affordability as posing the biggest threat to Parramatta’s ‘global’ 2035 trajectory. Council has long acknowledged the importance of diverse and affordable housing across our LGA and is keen to work with all levels of Government to get the policy settings right in this space,” the Lord Mayor said. 

The report stresses that driving innovation and investment is essential in supporting Parramatta’s growth as a ‘University City.’ It also highlights the importance of the Indigenous history of the area and aims to preserve that by protecting Greater Parramatta as the ‘City of Green and Blue.’

There are four priorities emphasised where government should now focus its efforts for this region over the next decade:

  1. Greater Parramatta needs a Strategic Plan and better cross-government cooperation and investment in the region.
  2. The development of the Greater Parramatta region needs to balance the goals of liveability and growth and better manage the unequal impacts of change.
  3. Greater Parramatta’s economic future needs to be secured through preserving and investing in the region’s industrial and urban services land.
  4. Sustainability needs to be a priority to ensure Greater Parramatta’s successful transformation into a resilient global city-region. The Review concludes that Parramatta will become a ‘global’ city, and notes that the real question is one of what type of global city it chooses to become.

The Review makes twelve recommendations grouped across three priorities:

Strategic Planning and Governance

  1. Make good on the commitment to begin putting the Strategic Plan for Greater Parramatta into action.
  2. Establish and appropriately resource administrative and collaborative infrastructure for a strong and well-governed Greater Parramatta.
  3. Activate Parramatta’s potential by developing a ‘City Deal.’

Planning and Infrastructure Priorities

  1. Secure economic anchors and sustain investment momentum.
  2. Future-proof by preserving industrial land and supporting residential development with high cost-benefit outcomes.
  3. Make Parramatta a world-class sports and entertainment destination.
  4. Plan for fast-rail transport infrastructure that connects Greater Parramatta to the ‘six cities’ Mega Region.
  5. Invest in cultural infrastructures..

Liveability and Sustainability

  1. Address critical liveability infrastructure shortages by building affordable housing.
  2. Drive innovation and investment by supporting the ‘University City’.
  3. Improve the active transport of the region.
  4. Preserve and protect Greater Parramatta as the ‘City of Green and Blue,’ led by deep Indigenous knowledge.

“This is a continuation of work we've already started but it's critical to remember we've not finished and there is still a lot more planning and investment needed to ensure the Greater Parramatta region realises its full potential,” said the Lord Mayor.