Jessica McSweeney is a Bachelor of Communication student at UTS. You can follow her on Twitter: https://twitter.com/jessicamacca
Residents of Sydney's Inner West fear overdevelopment in the Sydenham to Bankstown urban renewal corridor will destroy their communities.
The Inner West Council has organised a public meeting on August 10 in response to residents concerns about the State Government's proposal which will see tens of thousands of apartments built along the rail line.
A revised strategy, currently available for public consultation, will see a dramatic increase in residential units in the Inner West, with 35,000 new homes proposed including 6000 in Marrickville and 2,000 in Dulwich Hill.
The revised strategy claims to address the concerns of submissions to the original strategy, however the number of dwellings remain largely the same, with only 59 less in Dulwich Hill and an additional 2,000 in Marrickville.
Resident groups and the Inner West council fear the development will negatively impact communities and destroy historical buildings.
Summer Hill State Labor MP Jo Haylen said the government was ignoring the concerns of residents.
The community would be swamped by new residents … infrastructure will be stretched beyond its limits
"Residents have questions about schools, hospitals, health-care and affordable housing, none of which the government has addressed in these plans," Ms Haylen said
A total of 1440 submissions were made by the public to the NSW Planning and Environment Department, including 561 from Dulwich Hill alone.
Submissions included fears that existing schools and public parks would strain under pressure from an increased population.
Sydenham to Bankstown Alliance spokesperson, Peter Olive, said that the development would "lose a sense of Marrickville".
"[The community] would be swamped by new residents … infrastructure will be stretched beyond its limits,” Mr Olive said.
Ms Haylen said suburbs would lose their charm as a result of these developments.
"High rise buildings near a train station are one thing, but towers in the heart of Dulwich Hill or on one of Marrickville’s flood plains shows a complete disregard for the character and constraints of our Inner West neighbourhoods."
“The Town Hall meeting this week will bring together local residents, council experts and resident action groups hungry for more information on the government’s proposal for mass rezoning," said Jo Haylen.
Around 250 residents attended a Sydenham to Bankstown Alliance community meeting earlier this month.
The alliance is urging residents to speak out against the strategy.
"We would like the community to voice their opposition … the density is way above what was initially predicted by council,” Mr Olive said.
The public forum will take place at 6:30pm Thursday at Marrickville Town Hall.