Chief Executive Officer's Report
For the team at the Western Parkland City Authority (WPCA), 2021–22 was characterised by our mission to turn vision into outcomes — that is, to make the Western Parkland City the most green, connected and advanced in Australia.
The sheer size and anticipated growth of the Western Parkland City underscores its importance to NSW. As the 'chief advocates' for the area, our focus is to ensure that local communities benefit from that growth and change. A key part of this is our City Blueprint and Economic Development Roadmap — two initiatives we created to better understand how we could align planning with infrastructure and to help secure the city’s fair share of infrastructure funding.
The Bradfield City Centre and the Western Sydney Aerotropolis will be transformational, but this isn’t an 'either/or' proposition. While these city-scale investments are game changing and will shape our city for generations to come, we see liveability today at the local level across the Western Parkland City as equally important.
We want all the city centres across the Western Parkland City to be the beneficiaries of the significant employment and economic opportunities that will come. We also want to make sure everyone benefits from the improved mobility and accessibility to local jobs, services and recreation.
The ground-breaking $20 billion Western Sydney City Deal is testament to that focus. Four years on, the partnership between the Australian and NSW Governments and the eight Western Parkland local councils remains critical to the delivery of city shaping infrastructure. This includes the Sydney Metro – Western Sydney Airport Line, Regatta Park, Campbelltown Billabong, Wollondilly Shire Hall, Liverpool Lurnea Community Hub, Narellan Sports Hub and the Campbelltown Justice Precinct.
In addition to investing in ‘hard’ infrastructure, we are also investing in the people of the Western Parkland City. As we attract new industry and create a diversity of new employment opportunities, we are ensuring that residents have access to the right skills, training and education to take advantage of these new jobs.
This year, we launched the $37 million New Education and Training Model (NETM). The NETM is the first of its kind, flipping traditional learning models by designing and delivering courses in line with what local industry is telling us its workforce needs, and the skills needed to support emerging industries.
Our inaugural panel of education and training providers is collaborating with industry to design, develop and deliver 100 micro-credentials for 3,000 students as part of the four-year pilot.
Partnership remained a key theme for us throughout the year. We invited industry to partner with us at the Bradfield City Centre with the first opportunities for tenancy and investment being taken to market. We signed an additional eight memorandums of understanding bringing our total number of partners to 34. We also established an Investor Concierge Service to help businesses across the entire Western Parkland City establish and grow their operations.
We marked the commencement of activity at the Bradfield City Centre with a site cleansing by the Gandangara Local Aboriginal Land Council. It was a significant milestone that underlines a commitment to ensure First Nation principles guide our work.
We appointed our first Director of Aboriginal Outcomes, welcomed our first contractors, NPM Indigenous, and began developing a Reconciliation Action Plan. Our First Building, designed by Hassell Studio together with Djinjama – Cultural Design and Research, will set a new standard in building design, especially in the way it pays respect to Aboriginal culture.
I am incredibly proud of what the WPCA team has achieved this year and the foundations they are laying for the next. As we prepare to move our headquarters to Penrith to be closer to our community, I am heartened by the number of new team members joining us from across Western Parkland City. This is a great demonstration of our vision for a true 30-minute city supported by jobs and better opportunities for all.
I want to thank our many government and industry partners. We cannot do this work alone and your support and investment are critical in enabling us to deliver on our remit.
Dr Sarah Hill
CEO, Western Parkland City Authority