Economic Development Initiatives
City of Parramatta has identified a number of initiatives that will encourage concentrated jobs growth close to where people live, increase public transport usage, provide better services, and drive productivity and competitiveness for the region.
We've successfully secured a place on the IBM Smarter Cities™ initiative, a global initiative that brings together the best and brightest thinkers to create solutions for a smarter, sustainable planet.
Engaging the big thinkers and change makers in our community, we are working on solutions through smarter education, healthcare, water and energy use, public safety, transportation and smarter government.
As an engine of growth and opportunity for Greater Sydney and NSW, City of Parramatta Council is fostering great ideas and new ways of doing things.
We have identified key initiatives that will connect our city with the rest of Sydney and enrich Parramatta as a place to live, work, invest, visit and learn. They will also support the priorities of the NSW Government plan to rebuild the State's economy.
We are committed to working with government, business and the community to build better environments and experiences for the people who live, work, invest, visit and learn in our city.
Building a future as a centre of excellence for research, education, investment and enterprise.
Focusing on growing the knowledge sector and making it a place big thinkers and change makers will call home, Parramatta is ensuring the long-term sustainability of employment and investment opportunities for Greater Sydney. We are focusing on three of the most significant emerging sectors in the new global economy: health and life sciences, education and renewable energy.
These projects include:
- Westmead Biomedical Precinct
- Rydalmere/University of Western Sydney Business Innovation Park
- Camellia Peninsula Regeneration.
Westmead Biomedical Precinct
Internationally recognised as a centre of excellence in medical research and bio-technology, Westmead is also NSW's largest health precinct and one of Greater Sydney's largest employers. The precinct currently employs around 14,000 people.
As the major teaching hospital for the University of Sydney and home to four major hospitals and research centres, Westmead already services 43% of Sydney and provides specialist services for all of NSW. An expanded Westmead will play a critical role in providing excellence in health and related services for more than two million residents in Greater Sydney by 2036.
With projections for 7000 new jobs by 2036 and employment in the precinct reaching 21,000, many of them high-level research and medical roles, Westmead has enormous potential to contribute to the rebuilding of the State economy.
Camellia Peninsula Regeneration
The announcement by Shell to cease refining activities in Camellia within five years presents a rare opportunity to develop and rehabilitate a large parcel of land into an eco-industrial precinct with significant environmental and employment benefits for Greater Sydney for the next 50-years.
With renewable energy and efficient waste management emerging as one of the strongest growth sectors globally over the next 50 years, Camellia is a prime site for transitioning a heavy industry precinct into an innovative new business hub.
City of Parramatta Council proposes developing Camellia into an eco-industrial precinct specialising in the sustainable building, bio-fuel and renewable energy fields. This builds on a number of existing enterprises within the precinct to create employment opportunities and potential links to UWS.
Parramatta is a city of diversity. We embrace different cultures and celebrate the vibrancy these differences bring to our place, lifestyle and identity through a commitment to the arts, community events and the environment.
With a large employment base and potential for infrastructure investment to sustain and attract large increases in population, the NSW Government's Metropolitan Strategy has identified Greater Sydney's potential to accommodate Sydney's growing population.
Culture and Lifestyle
To ensure that our city continues to be a liveable place for Sydney's growing population, we are improving the entertainment and recreational offering.
Parramatta River Foreshore Arts & Entertainment Precinct
Parramatta's river foreshore is intrinsically connected to the city's history and heritage. It also links Parramatta's major employment precincts with significant heritage sites, entertainment venues, cultural institutions, other visitor attractions and ferry access to Sydney's CBD.
The river foreshore also creates a high quality recreation space with a continuous off-road pedestrian and cycle system.
The development of an arts and entertainment precinct will deliver enormous potential – in terms of jobs, entertainment, tourism, arts and culture, events, recreation and residential opportunities.
A bold new long-term vision has been envisaged for the foreshore to strengthen the links between Sydney's CBD and Parramatta, relocating the ferry wharf to a more central position.
In the short term, projects are already underway to improve the appearance of the river foreshore. Recent redevelopment of key sites along the river have been designed to reconnect people to the water and create activity on the foreshore.
Parramatta Major Parklands
As a UNESCO World Heritage listed site, Parramatta Park is one of Australia's most important cultural landscapes. It also forms part of Parramatta's major parklands network.
To be a truly liveable city, Parramatta needs a network of quality open and green spaces. We plan to connect and enhance Parramatta's parklands to serve the needs and promote harmony amongst our diverse population.
Parramatta is the biggest civil and administrative centre outside Sydney, centrally located with good transport accessibility, increasing lifestyle appeal and existing government supply chains.
The Economic Development Forum held in March 2011 highlighted the benefits for Parramatta of outward engagement. Council has been working on developing a strategic competitive identity and is looking to commence using the newly developed brand in mid 2012. This will be embedded into the 2036 Strategic planning process. It will spearhead new marketing campaigns in the commercial and cultural areas.
Western Sydney Wanderers
The Western Sydney Wanderers joined the A-League competition in 2012 and chose, in consultation with their fans, to play the team's home games at Parramatta Stadium. A remarkable first season effort saw them win their way to the grand final where they were defeated by reigning Premier's Central Coast Mariners. Council's Economic Development Team looked into the economic impact of the team on the Parramatta Economy.
Parramatta 10,000 campaign
This is a campaign aimed at delivering 10,000 new local jobs over the next five years. Estimates show that if Parramatta increased its share of employment by 20 per cent, relative to the Sydney CBD, Greater Western Sydney residents would save roughly 22,000 hours of travel a day, the equivalent of $242 million a year in travel time savings.
Parramatta 10,000 will include a Government Advocacy program, aimed at attracting more public sector jobs to Parramatta and away from the Sydney CBD. The strategy will also involve a business attraction program, highlighting the compelling 'Parramatta offer' to investors and commercial enterprise, both locally and internationally.
There is currently 57,000sqm of new, approved A-grade commercial space deliverable in the Parramatta CBD, with the capacity for an additional 160,000sqm over the next two years. This office space could cater for 11,000 extra jobs.
Parramatta 10,000 is about bringing all these elements together and promoting a better understanding of the employment, social and infrastructure investment required to support the growth of Western Sydney over the next 25 years.
The objective of the strategy is to ensure that Parramatta City Centre Lanes are retained and enhanced throughout the next 20 years to create a well coordinated fine grain network for pedestrians and vehicles that is safe, well activated, good looking and pleasant to use.
The revitalisation of lanes to improve Parramatta's Lanes both as a network and as individual lanes and the intention of council to coordinate this at a strategic level to achieve an attractive, active and well functioning lanes network for Parramatta City Centre. The following principles generally apply and are to be incorporated when development occurs alongside lanes or on sites that have been identified for new lanes:
- Retaining and extending the existing utilitarian functions of the network including servicing and accessing will support the city and business vitality long term
- A safe lanes network 24/7 will promote pedestrian use throughout the day
- Promoting pedestrian activity will improve safety and liveliness of lanes
- Designing lanes as destinations will increase street level retail and support city visitation
- Incorporating standard Public Domain Guidelines will promote consistent appearance and design and a good image for the city
- Lanes that are designed to express their special history, location and role in the network will improve Parramatta's character and identity
- Lane upgrades should combine improvements in activation as well as improvements in appearance, design and construction to ensure the lanes are safe and well used to maximise the city's potential and expenditure
- Incorporating lanes as venues for cultural events, art and interpretation programs will help to animate the city and improve street level activity.
The Business Hub
The Parramatta LGA is home to approximately 13,000 small businesses. 9,000 are sole operators, and a further 4,000 employ less than 5 people. There are 6 organisations involved in the small business space each providing some form of service to local entrepreneurs. At least 4 of these organisations provide networking opportunities.
A recurring theme in discussions with small businesses in the Parramatta CBD is the lack of business-ready space available for meetings, interviews and teleconferencing.
Much of this activity happens by default in coffee shops and while this suits some gatherings, it is not ideal for larger meetings or those requiring specialist facilities.
This plan recommends Council consider the idea of developing a Late Night Co-Working Business Hub for small business, using one of Council's properties as a pilot venue in the first instance.
It is envisioned the Open Business Hub would provide:
- a one-stop shop for small business information, advice, business training and mentoring
- a meeting place for small firms and visiting firms
- internet connectivity 24 hours
- training room facilities and technology including tele-conferencing
- regular line up of talks (eg focussing on the needs of ethnic businesses)
- flexible open work spaces for individuals and small groups to meet and collaborate, for example IT creatives
- access to UWS faculty members and students working at the Hub
- ability for City of Parramatta to interact with small business, and host feedback sessions (ie LEP, DA, parking)
Car Parking Strategy
The Car Parking Strategy was prepared with both short and long term objectives of better utilisation and management of the existing car parking facilities within the Parramatta city centre and overtime relocating all day parking from the city centre core to the edge of city centre, to allow the city centre to grow, and limit the possibility of traffic congestion.
- Continue the on-street fee and stay strategy (highest fee and shortest stay in the centre and cheapest fee and longest stay on the edge).
- Continue to manage the on-street parking demand on the city edges.
- Modify the length of on-street parking stay in the city centre to increase the supply of short stay spaces.
- Review the ¼P free on-street parking scheme in the medium term.
- Prepare a Parking Meter Renewal Plan.
- Equalise the parking fee across Council's car parks.
- Improve short stay parking in Council's multistorey car parks.
- Update the car parking information on Council's website.
- Provide car park directional signage to all public car parks.
- Improve vehicle and pedestrian accessibly to Council's multistorey car parks.
- Improve pedestrian amenity (internal) and visual (external) of Council's multistorey car parks.
- Review the planning controls for the provision of public short stay car parking.
- Prepare Council Car Park Redevelopment Plan (build multistorey car parks on the Macquarie Street and Fennell Street sites and close Horwood Place, former Brandsmart, Lennox Bridge, David Frater and Leabeter car parks).