Redeveloping Blackwattle Bay

The Department of Planning has released its plan for redeveloping Blackwattle Bay.

See the plans and make a submission on the Blackwattle Bay webpage: Blackwattle Bay – See the Plans.

This will be a major project including:

  • 1550 dwellings for about 2800 residents;
  • commercial and retail floor space to deliver 5600 jobs;
  • towers of up to 45 storeys to lower buildings of 4-8 storeys;
  • commercial, retail and community facilities including the new Sydney Fish Market;
  • a publicly accessible foreshore promenade providing continuous foreshore access between Glebe Island Bridge and the new Sydney Fish Market;
  • 30,000 square metres of public open space;
  • community and cultural facilities such as libraries, childcare facilities, and community centres;
  • 5% of total residential space for affordable housing – either by dedication of affordable dwellings within the precinct and/or paid as a monetary contribution;
  • a significant representation of indigenous history, heritage and culture;
  • amendments to the current planning regulations to enable a huge increase in building heights, remove the requirement to protect public waterway views and allow approval of major developments solely by the Planning Secretary; and
  • removal of the requirement to develop a Master Plan for the Blackwattle Bay area;
  • possible reallocation of developer contributions to areas outside Blackwattle Bay.

Community members have until 20 August to make submissions. While there are many attractive ideas and commitments in the plan, questions and concerns about its suitability for this area include:

  • Is it appropriate to have 45 storey towers on the harbour foreshore?
  • Will the foreshore promenade be wide enough for the anticipated amount of pedestrian and bicycle traffic?
  • How much extra traffic will be generated around an already highly congested road system?
  • Will there be medical and educational facilities to cater for the increase in residential population?
  • Is affordable housing guaranteed, or will the alternative monetary contribution disappear into consolidated revenue?
  • Will there be sufficient housing for key workers – teachers, nurses, community support workers, police, ambulance and emergency officers, delivery personnel and cleaners?
  • Will any indigenous people be able to live there? If not, how will an authentic indigenous presence be achieved?
  • How are the proposed changes to the planning regulations consistent with the government’s promise to return planning powers to the people?
  • Should developer contributions raised in Blackwattle Bay go into state consolidated revenue, or be used to support infrastructure with the Pyrmont/Ultimo/Glebe/White Bay precinct?

Anyone who shares any of these concerns, or others, should make a submission. It doesn’t need to be comprehensive; it is enough if lots of members of our community express a view about an aspect of the proposal: Blackwattle Bay – Have Your Say