Over the next 40 years, Greater Sydney is forecast to grow from a city of 5 million to 8 million people. At the same time, technology advancements will reshape how people and goods move around our city.
To address the opportunities and challenges facing Sydney and to sustain our global competitiveness, the Greater Sydney Commission (GSC) has established a vision for Sydney as a metropolis of three cities where people have access to jobs and services within 30 minutes by public transport. It is a vision for a city that is liveable, productive and sustainable.
The Greater Sydney Services and Infrastructure Plan is our 40-year plan for transport in Sydney. It is designed to support the land use vision for Sydney. Building on the state-wide transport outcomes identified in the Future Transport Strategy 2056, the Plan establishes the specific outcomes transport customers in Greater Sydney can expect and identifies the policy, service and infrastructure initiatives to achieve these.
Our focus is enabling people and goods to move safely, efficiently and reliably around Greater Sydney, including having access to their nearest centre within 30 minutes by public transport, 7 days a week. The transport system will also support the liveability, productivity and sustainability of places on our transport networks.
Achieving this will require more efficient modes of transport – public transport, shared transport and walking and cycling – to play a greater role. To support this, the NSW Government will invest in new transport links, better use existing capacity, prioritise road space for more efficient vehicles and ensure the transport network balances the efficient movement of people and goods and sustains the liveability and sustainability of centres it passes through.
About the Greater Sydney Services and Infrastructure Plan
The Greater Sydney Services and Infrastructure Plan forms part of Future Transport 2056. The Future Transport Strategy 2056 sets the strategic direction for transport in NSW over the next 40 years. Both the Regional NSW and Greater Sydney Services and Infrastructure Plans build on the state-wide transport outcomes identified in the Strategy, establishing specific outcomes that customers can expect and identifying the policy, service and infrastructure initiatives to achieve these.
Defining Greater Sydney
The scope of this Plan is the Greater Sydney region, as defined by the Greater Sydney Commission. This includes the 33 local government areas and five districts of Greater Sydney - North, South, Central City, Eastern City and Western City Districts.
This Plan also addresses connections between Greater Sydney and Regional NSW. This content is also included in the Regional NSW Services and Infrastructure Plan.
A Plan that puts the customer at the centre
The customer is at the centre of everything we do. That is why input from our customers, the community and industry is fundamental to Future Transport 2056, including the Greater Sydney Services and Infrastructure Plan.
A multi-channel, three-phase engagement campaign means we have engaged closely with customers and the community over a period of more than a year. This has included a community roadshow, industry roundtables and Q&A sessions and online engagement.
Since receiving feedback on the draft Greater Sydney Services and Infrastructure Plan between October and December 2017, we have reviewed all comments and submissions, summarised key comments, consulted across the NSW Government, and where feasible, refined our plans so the final Greater Sydney Services and Infrastructure Plan truly reflects what our customers want.
We will continue to seek community feedback both as part of our regular engagement processes and as we continue to develop more specific plans that build on the work of Future Transport.
Land use and transport vision for 2056
The transport vision for Greater Sydney has been developed to support the GSC’s vision for Greater Sydney as a metropolis of three cities, where people have access to jobs and services within 30 minutes by public transport. It also responds to the opportunities and challenges that will reshape the city and the way people and goods move over the next 40 years.
Opportunities and challenges for transport
Supporting the growth of our city
Greater Sydney is undergoing significant change, which is creating opportunities and challenges for our transport system. These include the need to support the growth of the region, sustaining and enhancing our role as a global city and harnessing new technology for the benefit of our customers.
Sustaining and enhancing our role as a global city
Greater Sydney is Australia’s leading global city. It is more connected with the world than ever before, however, we face growing competition from established and emerging cities to attract people and jobs, and maintain liveability, productivity and sustainability. This includes:
- encouraging greater use of more efficient modes of transport. To remain globally competitive as Sydney grows, it will require expanding public transport and ensuring more efficient modes of transport are prioritised on the road network where they are able to move more people more efficiently.
- balancing movement and place needs on the transport network. Enabling people and goods to move efficiently around the city while recognising the importance of the places through which transport services pass is necessary for sustaining and enhancing the liveability of our city.
Harnessing technology for the benefit of customers
Changes in technology are reshaping the way people and goods move and creating new opportunities to improve the experience of our customers. Continuing to harness these changes for the benefit of our customers is a key opportunity over the coming decades.
Whether it be new ridesharing services, real-time transport apps or paperless ticketing, customers are already experiencing the benefits of new technology. As detailed in the Future Transport Strategy, advanced automation and new digital platforms are set to extend these benefits.
A metropolis of three cities
The vision for Greater Sydney as a metropolis of three cities is designed to support the growth of Sydney by enabling people to have more convenient access to jobs and services across the region. The three cities include:
- Eastern Harbour City – stretching from the Northern Beaches to Sutherland Shire
- Central River City – extending outward from Greater Parramatta to Blacktown, Norwest, Epping and towards Bankstown
- Western Parkland City – focused around the Western Sydney Airport-Badgerys Creek Aerotropolis and extending north to Greater Penrith, east to Liverpool and south to Campbelltown-Macarthur
Each of the three cities is anchored by a metropolitan centre – the Harbour CBD in the east, Greater Parramatta in the centre and a cluster of centres in the west, including Western Sydney Airport-Badgerys Creek Aerotropolis, Greater Penrith, Liverpool and Campbelltown-Macarthur. Strategic centres and trade gateways are also dispersed across the region and play a key role in the vision for Greater Sydney.
A 30 minute city
The vision for Greater Sydney is one where people can access jobs and services in their nearest metropolitan city and strategic centre within 30 minutes by public transport, 7 days a week.
There are two components to the 30 minute city:
- Connecting people in each of the three cities to their nearest metropolitan centre. These are the largest employment and service centres in each of the three cities.
- Connecting residents in each of the five districts to their nearest strategic centre by public transport, walking and cycling, giving people 30-minute access to local jobs, goods and services.
Corridors for moving people and goods
To support the land use vision for Greater Sydney, the NSW Government developed a vision for the transport system that will enable people and goods to move conveniently around the city. It will enable people within each city to access their nearest metropolitan and strategic centre within 30 minutes by public transport, 7 days a week using:
- City-shaping corridors – major trunk road and rail public transport corridors providing higher speed and volume linkages between our cities and centres that shape locational decisions of residents and businesses.
- City-serving corridors – higher density corridors concentrated within ~10km of metropolitan centres providing high frequency access to metropolitan cities/centres with more frequent stopping patterns
- Centre-serving corridors – local corridors that support buses, walking and cycling, to connect people with their nearest centre and transport node
The road and rail network, including dedicated and shared freight corridors and connections to regional NSW are fundamental parts of this future transport system. Technology is changing how we travel – and how we deliver transport, yet we expect most trips will continue to be provided on the road and rail network.
The land use and transport vision for 2056 is detailed in chapter 3.
To support the liveability, productivity and sustainability of places on our transport network, we have developed a Movement and Place Framework. The Framework acknowledges that transport networks have different functions and roles, and serve as both a destination and as a means to move people and goods. The Movement and Place Framework will enable us to plan, design and operate the transport network to meet these different needs by providing greater transparency, supporting collaboration between those responsible for land use, transport and roads while also encouraging input from the community. Through the Framework we will be able to design a future network that is better used and supports the safe, efficient and reliable movement of people and goods and the need to create and renew great places along it.
Underpinning the Movement and Place Framework are a set of principles that provide a common platform for planning the transport network and the basis for efficient use of the network, allocation of road space while acknowledging the needs and expectations of both transport customers and of the community. These include:
- Streets as Places for People are the heart of communities and require better prioritisation of public transport, pedestrians, cycle and freight access whilst limiting through traffic that is not destined for the centre.
- Local Streets should be supported by lower vehicle speeds that better align with the need to prioritise walking and cycling within local communities.
- Vibrant Streets are some of the most active areas in our cities and need to balance high urban density and pedestrian activity generated by commercial, tourism, leisure and entertainment venues, with the need to move high volumes of people and goods.
- Movement Corridors and Motorways are highly important for the movement of people and goods, with a key role to provide efficient movement across the road network where there is little interaction with adjacent land use. Where Movement Corridors pass through centres there is a need to acknowledge the value of places, providing some priority for pedestrians and access to sustain and support centres and the liveability of local communities.
Customer outcomes for Greater Sydney
The Future Transport Strategy establishes six state-wide transport outcomes for NSW. These outcomes will guide policy reform and service provision and provide a framework to network planning and investment aimed at harnessing rapid change and innovation to support a modern, innovative transport system that serves the community and economy well into the 21st century.
To support these state-wide transport outcomes, we have established specific outcomes that transport customers in Greater Sydney can expect over the life of this Plan. The customer outcomes are detailed in chapter 3.
Transport networks form the backbone of our city. Transport services and the infrastructure they use not only support the movement of people and goods but also attract activity around them and shape the geography of our city. Consistent with the land use and transport vision, the NSW Government proposes to expand the transport networks to support the growth of Greater Sydney and improve access to jobs and services. Investigation will continue into how to harness new technology to better use existing capacity and enable services to be more responsive to demand. The future networks are summarised below and detailed in chapter 4.
The city-shaping network includes higher speed and volume linkages between our cities and centres. The function of this network is to enable people living in any of the three cities to access their nearest metropolitan centre within 30 minutes and to be able to travel efficiently between these metropolitan centres.
As Greater Sydney transitions to a metropolis of three cities, the city-shaping network will need to expand to provide improved access to and between each metropolitan city/centre, particularly Greater Parramatta and centres in the Metropolitan cluster in the Western Parkland City.
The city-serving network will provide high-frequency services within a ~10km radii of the three metropolitan cities/centres. This will support access within some of the densest land use in Greater Sydney where demand for travel is most concentrated. As these inner urban areas in each of the three cities develop and become more dense, the Government will investigate the prioritisation of on-street public transport services and invest in higher frequency services.
The centre-serving network connects local areas with their nearest centre. It enables customers living in typically lower density areas across Greater Sydney to access jobs, education and services in strategic centres and to access city-shaping corridors, such as train, metro and high frequency bus services, which pass through these centres. Consistent with customer outcomes 1-3, on-demand transport, walking and cycling will play a greater role in the future centre-serving network to improve convenience, harness innovation and promote healthy lifestyles.
The strategic freight network includes the road and rail network that support the movement of goods. This includes corridors connecting trade gateways, freight precincts and centres across Greater Sydney as well as corridors that connect the region with outer metropolitan areas and regional NSW. Supporting the safe, efficient and reliable movement of goods around Greater Sydney will require a high capacity network for moving goods between trade gateways and freight precincts, such as from port to warehouse, and providing convenient access to service our centres. The future network will support this through the strategic road network and improved freight rail connections, particularly between ports, employment land and intermodal terminals.
Services and infrastructure initiatives
The NSW Government has identified policy, service and infrastructure initiatives to support the customer outcomes and deliver the future networks. Initiatives have been prioritised on the basis of delivering on existing commitments, addressing network constraints and supporting growth. The initiatives include those that have been committed to for delivery in the next 10 years as well as additional initiatives that have been identified for investigation (both of which will be subject to business cases and funding). These include:
- Committed initiatives (0-10yrs) – initiatives that either have committed funding, are for immediate detailed planning, or are part of key maintenance, urban renewal, local amenity or safety programs. Some projects included in this category are committed subject to business case and funding decision.
- Initiatives for investigation (0-10, 10-20yrs) – intended to be investigated for potential commitment or implementation within the next 10 or 20 years. Those listed in the 0-10 horizon will be prioritised for more detailed investigation to determine if they are required in the next decade.
- Visionary initiatives (20+ years) – longer term initiatives that may be investigated within the next 10 years, but are unlikely to require implementation within 20 years.
Key initiatives are summarised below with all initiatives detailed in chapter 6.
There has already been significant progress in implementing a number of initiatives included in the Greater Sydney Services and Infrastructure Plan, with nearly 40 major initiatives being delivered or committed to by the NSW Government. Building on this, we will progress detailed planning for new initiatives (which will be subject to business cases and funding), continuing to engage closely with our customers and the community as we do so. We will also measure our progress against key customer outcomes, to make Greater Sydney a liveable, productive and sustainable city.