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NSW Planning Minister announces new body to govern Sydney harbour

NSW Planning Minister announces new body to govern Sydney harbour
September 16, 2014

After years of criticism and allegations of corruption and nepotism surrounding the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority (SHFA), NSW Planning Minister Pru Goward has announced a new vision for Sydney Harbour, with a new high level NSW Government committee to bring together various stakeholders and provide much-needed coordination.

Announcing the change, Minister Goward stated “Sydney’s harbour and foreshore is our city’s number one asset. We cannot rest on our laurels – the foreshore deserves a plan for the future.

“Ownership of property on Sydney Harbour’s foreshore is like a patchwork quilt.

“For years there has been no government body with clear responsibility for managing all the different interests, or developing a clear vision for the future.

“That is why a committee is being established to have over-arching responsibility for developing a vision for the foreshore, and bringing together all the agencies and entities which have an interest, for the benefit of every Sydneysider.”

The Committee will be made up of the heads of key Government agencies, and will be independently chaired by former long-term and respected senior public servant, Les Wielinga.

The Committee will work with the community and stakeholders to develop a strategic vision for the foreshore, including key precincts such as The Rocks, Circular Quay, Barangaroo and Millers Point.

Wielinga will also be leading the new vision for Sydney’s Harbour’s foreshore through his appointment as Chair of the SHFA.

He has been tasked with reviewing the functions of the organisation, and identifying any potential for reducing duplication of service delivery.

Minister Goward concluded “one of the challenges of developing a new vision for the foreshore is the variety of property owners, and the level of duplication. It is imperative we move forward with the appropriate, expert agencies delivering services they are expert in providing.”

Prior to the announcement of the new committee, there had been considerable speculation that the SHFA would be abolished with governance of the harbourfront reverting to the City of Sydney.

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