Good news for affordable housing

Inner West Mayor, Darcy Byrne today welcomed a decision by the State Government to finally act on calls from Council to amend planning laws to make it easier to force developers to provide affordable housing in new housing developments. 

Mayor Byrne said while the move was a win for the local community, he warned it was by no means a cure all to solve Sydney’s growing housing affordability crisis. 

“Council has been arguing for some time that the only way we are going to ensure that key workers such as teachers and nurses can afford to live in our area is to have mandatory affordable housing contribution schemes in new developments,” he said. 

“We have been calling on the Government to include Inner West Council in the State Environmental Planning Policy (SEPP 70) to enable Council to force developers to provide affordable housing in new developments. 

“It’s great that we are now finally in a position to be able to require developers to negotiate about affordable housing rather than having to rely on goodwill and voluntary agreements. 

“But while this is a good first step, it is by no means a cure that will fix the growing problem of key workers being priced out of the local area. 

“The Government has been behind the eight ball when it comes to addressing housing affordability in this City and it needs to step up and do more to ensure workers our community relies on can afford to live in the suburbs they serve.” 

Council had been leading the charge when it came to tackling the problem of housing affordability. 

Last year Council adopted an Affordable Housing Policy which requires 15 per cent of all total gross floor area to be transferred to Council as affordable rental housing units for any rezoned residential development with 20 or more dwellings or a gross floor area larger than 1,700sqm. 

The Policy applies to all land subject to re-zoning for residential or mixed use purposes across the LGA and is not limited to any specific area. 

Council Policy also supports an affordable housing target of 30 per cent of all affordable units on State Government owned land.

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Page last updated: 25 Sep 2023