SYDNEY’S “BOLD NEW PLAN” ON NIGHTLIFE: SUBMISSIONS CLOSING

In Trade Restriction by Clyde Mooney

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The City of Sydney is seeking final feedback on its bold proposal to reinvigorate and evolve the $4bn Sydney night-time economy.

Late 2018 the City of Sydney (CoS) and Lord Mayor Clover Moore released the “bold new plan” to jump-start the capital’s nightlife and economy.

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The proposed changes are heavily in favour of increasing trading hours for many types of businesses and creation of more late-night precincts.

The ideas are part of CoS’s first review in more than a decade of the planning controls on where, when and until what time night-time activity can take place in Sydney.

The review has prompted “an unprecedented response from the community” tired of the impact of the lockout laws, which are beyond the immediate control of CoS. (See – CoS submission to state government on ‘lockout’ laws)

“More than 10,000 people gave us their feedback and the overwhelming majority said they want Sydney to have a diverse and exciting night-time economy with events and activities for people of all ages and interests,” said the Lord Mayor.

“The changes we are proposing to our controls manage the balance between allowing well-managed venues to continue to trade, and any impacts on local neighbourhoods.

“They respond to the very strong demand for a thriving, late-night city and set the foundations for a truly 24- hour Sydney into the future.”

CoS report Sydney’s night-time economy to be worth over $4bn to the State economy each year, employing more than 35,000 people.

Key points to the draft development control plan are:

  • A 24-hour city centre, with businesses trading around the clock, stretching from Darling Harbour to Hyde Park to Central Station. The light rail will operate 21 hours per day, with four stops in this zone
  • Later trading in local centres – increasing from midnight to 2am, in ‘village main streets’ such as Crown St, Redfern St, Union St and Glebe Point Rd
  • New late-trading areas in the fastest-growing neighbourhoods, such as Barangaroo, Green Square, Danks St Waterloo and East Village in Zetland
  • Extended and 24-hour trading for non-licensed businesses, such as bookstores, clothing shops, banks, drycleaners, hairdressers, in an attempt to attract a wider range of people out at night for different activities. Up to 24-hours’ trade in the city centre and busy inner-city areas, 2am on village high streets, and midnight other areas
  • A new 24-hour cultural precinct with a focus on arts, culture and entertainment in Alexandria – the area seen as ideal due to its industrial character, proximity to existing and future public transport services, and distance from residential areas
  • Expanding existing late-night trading areas in Chippendale, Redfern, west Surry Hills and Llankelly Place in Potts Point to include selected adjacent streets
  • Additional hour of trading for dedicated performance and culture venues (trial basis)

Kerri Glasscock, CEO of Sydney Fringe Festival and co-chair of the nightlife and creative sector advisory panel, welcomed the proposals as reflecting the “changing needs” of people enjoying the city at night.

“The dream of a vibrant and diverse night-time offering can only be made possible with regulatory reform. For too long, small businesses and the cultural sector have been actively prohibited by regulation.”

SUBMISSIONS on the Planning Controls review close 8 February.

More information and link to online form HERE.