3.1.1 Current economic profile and recent growth

The West Central District is home to more than 21% of Greater Sydney’s population, approximately 18% of its jobs and generates an estimated 18% of Greater Sydney’s economic activity.

The District’s jobs are categorised as knowledge-intensive and professional jobs, health and education jobs, population-serving jobs and industrial jobs. This categoristaion helps us to compare them to other District profiles and understand why different types of industries locate in different parts of Greater Sydney.

The West Central District’s proportion of population-serving and health and education jobs (32% and 19% respectively) reflect the District’s population growth and its rich offering of health and education institutions.

The largest growth in additional employees is anticipated to occur in public administration due to the expected take up of leases in the new Parramatta Square development. Financial and insurance services is the third largest sector in total and in terms of additional employees. In terms of overall Gross Regional Product, the financial services sector is forecast to enjoy the most significant growth, followed by public administration, education and health care.

Over the past two decades, the number of jobs generated across the West Central District has grown by more than 50%. Employment growth has occurred across all four industry sectors, with the most significant growth in health and education (78%), followed by knowledge-intensive (71%), population-serving (61%) and industrial (17%).

This highlights the potential of the health and education sector to continue to play a significant economic role in the West Central District in the future, particularly given the District’s significant forecast population growth (as discussed further in Chapter 4).

In terms of absolute employment, the greatest increase in jobs was experienced in the population-serving sector (52,800 new jobs) which is reflective of the population growth that has occurred in the District.

The share of industrial jobs in the West Central District (26%) is higher than the average for Greater Sydney (19%) (figure 3-2). By contrast the District has a lower proportion of knowledge-intensive jobs (23% compared to 32%). This requires us to consider ways to leverage the District’s economic assets and investment opportunities to transition the economy to higher order and more productive industries and the knowledge-intensive economy.

 

Greater Parramatta projects

Parramatta Square is a three-hectare mixed use redevelopment precinct that will include a new Western Sydney University Parramatta Campus in 2017, several thousand square metres of A-grade commercial office and retail space, the City of Parramatta’s community and civic space, a 90 storey residential building and 20,000 square metres of public space.

The new Western Sydney Stadium to be located on the Pirtek Stadium site will cater for bigger crowds for sport and entertainment events with seating for 30,000. It will generate an estimated 1,200 construction jobs and up to 900 jobs when in operation.

The Parramatta Riverbank Strategy will activate the Parramatta River as a key cultural precinct. The Riverbank will be the setting of the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, as part of a $30 million arts and cultural package for Western Sydney that includes funding to artists and arts organisations as well as a resident arts company at the Riverside Theatre.

The Parramatta North Urban Transformation Program brings together State agencies, councils and stakeholders to provide approximately 2,700 new homes, create 2,000 new jobs and improve connections within Greater Parramatta. It will respect the area’s social history by conserving heritage and protecting environmental assets. This delivery of social, cultural and recreational infrastructure will unlock and share the heritage of Parramatta North.

The Westmead Redevelopment Project is a major initiative of the NSW Government, led by Health Infrastructure NSW, the Western Sydney Local Health District and the Children’s Hospital at Westmead. The redevelopment aims to transform Westmead into a world- class health city.

Parramatta City will benefit from two new multi-storey schools, built to cater for up to 2,000 students and a new primary school for up to 1,000 students. Both new schools will be located on existing school sites.

 

 

Table 3-1: West Central District: Historical population and jobs growth (1996-2016)

Source: (population) Department of Planning and Environment, 2016 New South Wales State and Local Government Area Population and Household Projections and Implied Dwelling Requirements 2016 to 2036, NSW Government, Sydney; (employment) Transport Performance & Analytics (TPA) (formerly known as Bureau of Transport Statistics), Transport for NSW, Greater Sydney Employment Forecasts, 2011 to 2041 (2016 release), NSW Government, Sydney.

 

Figure 3-2 Employment profile by sector West Central District vs Greater Sydney (2016)

Source: Transport Performance Analytics (TPA) (formerly known as Bureau of Transport Statistics), Transport for NSW, Greater Sydney Employment Forecasts, 2011 to 2041 (2016 Release)

Figure 3-3 shows the spatial distribution of economic activity across the District in terms of Gross Value Added (GVA), which measures the value of goods and services in a particular area.

Concentrations of economic activity across the District are also areas of high labour productivity (illustrated in Figure 3-4).

Labour productivity is a measure of the efficient use of resources. Areas with high labour productivity generate higher economic value per hour worked. The spatial distribution of productivity can help build an understanding of important economic places as well as the profile of economic activity in a particular area.

 

 

Economic hubs include Blacktown, Norwest, GPOP and employment and urban services precincts such as Huntingwood, Greystanes and Eastern Creek (part of the broader Western Sydney Employment Area). These locations serve an important economic role within the District and will continue to drive its future productivity.

The manufacturing sector is one of the largest employer in the District and the second greatest contributor to economic output (12.5% share of GVA). This follows the financial and insurance services (12.8% share) contribution.