Calls for NSW to streamline its process for housing approvals

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The NSW Government's target for 90% of housing approvals to be done within 40 days is welcomed, but will only be met with a better planning system, according to a leading property association.

According to the Property Council of Australia, the target is contained within a new accountability framework, which was outlined by the Government this week.

“The concept of reduced approval times for new housing should help cut the time and cost of projects,” NSW executive director Glenn Byres said.

“The target should shape a renewed focus on streamlining the approvals process and eliminating needless red tape that strangles housing projects.

“Reaching the 40-day target will require a quantum leap forward in culture, process and practice, particularly for multi-unit residential projects now common in the market.”

The Government's own data, says Byres, makes clear the average determination time for residential development applications is currently 65 days.

“We know Sydney is forecast to have a housing supply deficit of 190,000 by 2024 without action – and reducing the time and cost of bringing new homes to market is part of the fix.

“This requires swifter pathways for all housing but there needs to be a particular emphasis on multi-unit residential given the urban renewal occurring in Sydney.

“Too often these projects get stuck in the slow lane and yet they are increasingly going to provide the bulk of housing across Sydney.”

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