No Capacity for Housing Growth & No Trains in Future for West of Bankstown

(Editor’s Note: Sydney Trains will temporarily remain in the West of Bankstown between 2024 – 2030. This article refers to the Transport for NSW planning to again remove Sydney Trains in the 2030s).

Transport for NSW has advised the Department of Planning, Housing and Infrastructure that the West of Bankstown area does not have capacity for increased densities. The Diverse and Well-located Homes program includes increased densities for areas currently zoned R2 (Medium Density) and R3 (Low Density) within 800m of a town centre (including transport hubs e.g. train station).

The indicative planning analysis of Transport for NSW provided to the Department of Planning for the Diverse and Well-located Homes program suggests that nearly all Sydney Trains and Sydney Metro stations have capacity (or will have capacity pending new infrastructure upgrades) for increased housing densities. However, the West of Bankstown area is not included in any of the tiers for capacity or potential capacity for housing.

Stations identified by Transport for NSW with capacity or potential capacity for Diverse and Well-located Homes. The West of Bankstown (Berala – Carramar – Yagoona) is part of the Diverse and Well-Located Homes Program but does not have capacity for housing growth. Source: Department of Planning, Housing and Infrastructure GIPA-24-3320: Changes to low and mid-rise housing.

Transport for NSW has not committed to any infrastructure upgrades or keeping stations in the West of Bankstown open with Sydney Trains beyond the 2024 timetable (which will be replaced with a new 2025 timetable as confirmed in the Sydney Trains Review – Final Report). A number of internal Transport for NSW documents have already indicated that the “City to Liverpool via Regents Park” and “Lidcombe to Bankstown” shuttle will again be removed in the 2030s.

Transport for NSW is considering to REMOVE the T2 Inner West Line: City to Liverpool via Regents Park service AGAIN in the 2030s!
The NSW Government has only currently committed to Sydney Trains in the West of Bankstown area for the 2024 timetable but not yet affirmed keeping direct trains to Central nor affirmed keeping stations opened in the long-term future.

The lack of passenger rail services for the West of Bankstown area would appear to be the determinant factor in Berala – Carramar – Yagoona not being included in the Diverse and Well-located Homes program as eligibility criteria include proximity to train stations.

Also to be noted is the Transport for NSW advice to the Department of Planning for the Transport Orientated Development Program is that Berala, Lidcombe, Homebush are the 3 stations without capacity for housing opportunities yet have been included in the Transport Orientated Development Program.

Stations identified by Transport for NSW with capacity for the Transport Orientated Development (TOD) as of March 2023. Berala, Lidcombe, Homebush are the 3 stations in the Transport Orientated Development Program but are not identified as having housing growth opportunities.

The Sydney Trains Review – Final Report also appears to indicate that the West of Bankstown area is not to be included in the Transport for NSW Digital Signals Program. Lines without direct trains to Central are excluded from the digital signalling upgrade hence the West of Bankstown area is unlikely to be covered by the program.

Transport for NSW’s Digital Systems Program will upgrade Sydney Trains signalling starting with the Eastern Suburbs and North Shore. However the West of Bankstown does not appear to be included as the long-term future of train services to Central and train stations remains in doubt.

Regardless of the Diverse and Well-located Homes Program and the Transport Orientated Development Program, the West of Bankstown area needs our Sydney Trains Network services with direct trains from all stations to City Circle, Central, Liverpool, and Bankstown.

As previously stated, we are not opposed in principle to transport orientated development, however sites for increased densities and development must be supported by adequate infrastructure including transport, health, education, open spaces, water, sewage etc.

We have written to Transport Minister Jo Haylen advocating for the investment to the Sydney Trains Network to include all stations in the West of Bankstown area beyond the 2024 timetable, for the maintaining of stations with direct trains, and for signalling upgrades.