Lobby group urges land near Sydney’s train stations for affordable housing

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A new idea has been sparked by an influential lobby group, the Committee for Sydney, to address the city’s shortage of affordable housing.
 
The group suggested the State Government should “unlock” the land above and around train stations to provide more affordable housing across the area. This can also reduce traffic congestion in the area, the Committee for Sydney claimed.
 
To strengthen the group’s move, Committee for Sydney chairwoman Lucy Turnbull sent a letter to Premier Mike Baird and the relevant ministers asking them to consider the development strategy which is based on a similar plan underway in London.
 
Real estate developers in London are building a mix of social, affordable and private dwellings above Tube stations at 50 sites around the English capital, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.
 
In addition, Committee for Sydney chief executive Tim Williams said government-owned lands above and adjacent to train stations are not being used to their full potential.
 
"Somewhere in that land bank is a real opportunity to make a contribution to affordable housing if the relevant government departments and developers can take a co-ordinated approach," he was quoted as saying.
 
"If this can be perfectly feasible in Hong Kong and London, why is it not feasible in Sydney?  It is possible throughout the world, so please don't tell me it's not possible in Sydney."
 

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