City of Sydney – A City like No Other
The 2000 Sydney Olympic and Paralympic Games were recognised as the “best ever” – setting new benchmarks in the areas of environment, infrastructure, transport and social and cultural cohesion. While Sydney’s grip on the title will be challenged by the London Games, an equally ambitious program mounted by the City is underway to take Sydney to new heights of prosperity and sustainability.
Sustainable Sydney 2030 is a call to arms in the face of challenges facing cities around the world – globalisation, uncertain economic times and climate change. The premise and inspiration for Sustainable Sydney 2030 are that with will and imagination these challenges can provide cities and their communities with a springboard to a greener, healthier and more harmonious future. With the focus of the global economy shifting to Asia, for the first time in its settled history, Australia finds itself in the region and time-zone that will be the centre of global economics. As Australia’s global city, Sydney matters – to the whole of New South Wales and to the nation.
Sydney central business district (CBD) represents almost 10 per cent of the Australian economy, and one-quarter that of NSW. It contributes at least AUD$7.5 billion in revenue to the state and federal governments. Sydney is home to about 60 per cent of all Asia-Pacific regional headquarters in Australia; 70 per cent of property and business services and 75 per cent of all information and communications technologies headquarters.
Australia’s resources and mining boom created a total of 60,000 jobs in the five years to 2009. In the same period, in just five square kilometres of the city centre and neighbouring precincts, employment rose by 40,000. Sydney city attracts more than half of Australia’s international visitors. The Sustainable Sydney 2030 program has in motion 10strategic directions to achieve goals covering economy and innovation, environmental performance, public transport, walking and bike riding, sustainable urban renewal, housing, culture and creativity, and effective governance and partnerships with the private sector.
Lord Mayor of Sydney,
• Revitalisation of the city’s western edge to connect the city centre to the waterfront;
• Introduction of ‘green transformer’ tri generation systems to generate electricity locally across the city, providing hot water and cooling with lower greenhouse emissions;
• A 200km bike network, including 55km of separated cycle ways to create an alternative, healthy transport option.
Another project – the AUD8 billion Green Square development – involves the renewal of a massive site strategically placed between the CBD and Sydney Airport. Green Square will deliver 22,000 new jobs, 20,000 new homes (including hundreds of affordable housing units for key workers) and 40,000 new residents. It will transform the area into a new commercial, retail, residential and cultural hub – and one of Australia’s first carbon-neutral communities.
- The estimated value of economic activity in the City Centre is $90 billion
- Foreign Policy magazine in conjunction with A.T. Kearney and the Chicago Council on Global Affairs ranked Sydney in the top ten global cities in its 2010 Global Cities Index
- Sydney has been ranked 9th as a global finance centre, 12th in the MasterCard Index of Commerce Cities and 10th in the Mercer Quality of Living Index
- The City is spending $574 million on capital works over the next four years
- Among the 200,000 business that call Sydney home are 60 per cent of all Asia-Pacific regional headquarters in Australia; 70 percent of property and business services; and 75 percent of all information and communications technologies headquarters
- The City covers 26 sq. km., has 183,000 residents and attracts one million visitors a day
- It is the first government body in Australia to achieve carbon neutral status as a result of benchmark greenhouse gas reduction programs – 210,000 tonnes since 2008, equivalent to taking 70,000 cars off the road for a year
- The City, working with 14 neighbouring councils, has identified a 284 km. cycling network – spanning 164 suburbs and a population of 1.2 million people – that by 2016 will generate a forecasted 66 percent increase in bike trips
- The City has forged a partnership with the owners of 60 per cent of Sydney’s CBD office space to help make Sydney an environmental leader through innovative new programs to cut energy, water and carbon pollution costs
- The City is already a world centre for international students, particularly from Asia. Nearly 30,000 international students attend a university within a few kilometres of the city centre
- The Loughborough University “global and world Cities” group endorsed Sydney as one of only nine ‘alpha+’ world cities based on connection to the global economy
- Over the next two decades, the share of world economic activity within 10,000 kilometres of Sydney will increase from 30% to almost 50%
- Already a number of Chinese banks have established offices in the City, as business to business trade increases. It is not just China, however – more than half of the East Asian business visitors to Australia come to Sydney
- The City is home to more than 15 percent of Australia’s exporting Advanced Business Services, including banking, investment and IT; 11 per cent of national employment in creative and performing arts activity; and 44 per cent in more specific industries such as internet publishing and broadcasting
- Sydney CBD is in the top 15 in global CBD size
- The City comprises a diverse ethnic mix with half of its residents born overseas. More than 30% of the resident population speaks a language other than English. Apart from English, the most common languages spoken at home are Chinese, Indonesian, Korean and Greek
- Almost half of city residents are aged between 18 and 34. Most significantly, two-thirds of the population increase in the last five years has occurred in this age group
- The population is forecast to increase to 243,000 by 2030