Ian: This could be written about the expansions to Vancouver’s transit also.
…who’ll profit from the value uplift that will flow from the massive investment of taxpayers’ funds, both from higher land values resulting from the new density and from being snug up against a new Metro line?
…as each day passes, developers are doing their maths based on the existing scenario set out by the Department of Planning. Soon it will be too late to retrofit any changes.
… what percentage of the 36,000 new apartments and other dwellings along the renewal corridor has been allocated for affordable housing? We can be sure they won’t be pitched at the pockets of those who live there now.
And as new investment comes in, so rents will rise. Without a significant affordable housing component, many of the essential workers who live there today – the mechanics, care attendants and shop workers – will be pushed further towards Sydney’s periphery. That will leave the rest of the city struggling to get the lower-paid workforce it needs to function productively.
In comparable renewal projects in cities like London and New York, a significant proportion of new stock is set aside as affordable housing, precisely to avoid such problems. It’s accepted as completely reasonable that lower-income working families should also benefit from new housing delivered as a result of public investment.
The Baird government must make it clear to developers exactly what proportion of the new homes will be set aside for this purpose – and quickly. The case for a zoning policy that mandates a proportion of all new homes as affordable has never been clearer.
The government also needs to show us where it is placing services, such as the new schools that the expanded population will need. With the government’s zoning map not identifying where these services will go, land-owners will rightly question any subsequent proposal for a school or park that would diminish their profits from possible residential development.