There’s been a lot of talk about funding transformational projects. But there is nothing more transformational than the plan for a community and justice precinct in the heart of Campbelltown.
As the $1 billion plus project – yes, one billion dollars – enters the master planning stages it is becoming clear that it could be the biggest local infrastructure project for more than 50 years.
It could arguably be even bigger than the establishment of a Western Sydney University campus in Campbelltown in the late 1990s.
What makes the justice precinct so transformational is its location, right in the middle of Queen Street in the city centre of Campbelltown.
The precinct will mean thousands of new jobs, which would provide a massive boost for businesses along Queen Street, from Campbelltown Road in the north to the art gallery at the southern end.
South West Sydney Community and Justice Precinct, to give it its full title at present, is a joint project between Campbelltown Council and the state and federal governments.
The three tiers of government are sharing the cost of the master plan of $1.2 million.
Community consultation is now under way as part of the master planning process.
‘“This is an exciting time for the community,’’ says Campbelltown Mayor George Greiss.
“This is an opportunity to see their own ideas and aspirations for our city centre incorporated into the design of a vibrant precinct that will not only attract economic investment and jobs, but also be a place where people can come to enjoy public spaces and gather with friends and family.
“This community consultation process will shape the aesthetic of the precinct, the use of public spaces and the types of places that residents want to see and experience.
“The precinct would not only meet the justice needs of a growing population, but also signal that the Campbelltown CBD is an attractive place for business to thrive,” he said.
The project will bring more than jobs and prosperity to Campbelltown and the region around it: the 12.5 acre precinct adjacent to the current court buildings will set a new benchmark for social justice in Australia by improving access to courts and community services.
It is also designed to boost education and employment opportunities for the rapidly growing communities of the region.
Proposed facilities for the site, which currently accommodates the Campbelltown Court House and Campbelltown Civic Centre, could include new courts and justice services, new police station, city library and education facilities such as a vertical university campus, community facilities, offices, retail and new public spaces.
The master plan is being prepared by consultants Hassell Studio and Bridge42.
Later in the year the second phase of the consultation will be held, inviting community feedback on the draft master plan.
Residents are encouraged to provide their views on what they would like to see and experience in the precinct by completing an online survey at https://overtoyou.campbelltown.nsw.gov.au/cjprecinct
The survey will open on Monday and close on June 19.