Speech: Infrastructure growth in North West Sydney


Mr HAWKE (Mitchell) (19:39): I rise tonight to continue to consistently speak, over the time I've been here, on infrastructure needs in Western Sydney and north-west Sydney, in my electorate of Mitchell. It continues to be one of the fastest and most rapidly growing areas of our country. We have a choice of over 90,000 Australians who have moved into this electorate over the last decade. It's been essential to have a government in New South Wales that supports infrastructure growth and infrastructure provision and is able to fund and sustain the commitment to so many projects that have now become the norm in Sydney. For my colleagues from all over the rest of the country, I'd say to them that Sydney is finally starting to work after a decade of Liberal-National government, which has put the money into the infrastructure projects that have been missing in Sydney for so long.

I'm pleased to say that the coalition government, on the weekend, announced a very important commitment to the Tallawong to St Marys Metro line—what I've dubbed the missing link between St Marys and Rouse Hill, in effect—that will complete Sydney's Metro network. Essentially and vitally, that will go to the Nancy-Bird Walton airport. Of course, the second airport for Sydney was the commitment of the previous coalition government federally, who had the vision, finally, to take the tough decision and make sure this airport finally went ahead, and it's going ahead.

Still to this day it bemuses me that I have federal Labor colleagues who oppose the airport, even today—the member for Chifley being one, the member for Macarthur being another, and the member for Macquarie; they are still opposing the airport. Even as industry minister, the member for Chifley might want to think: where is all this manufacturing he is talking about going to go? It's going to go at the airport site. The coalition government has landmarked an enormous amount of land for the provision of manufacturing, which is high-tech manufacturing, advanced manufacturing, close to the airport, exactly where you'll need it to move around goods and freight and services. Yet, for some reason, the member for Chifley, from a low-socioeconomic demographic electorate—different to my electorate—opposes one of the biggest job creators in Western Sydney, providing not just transport and other construction jobs but long-term, sustainable jobs in industry, in manufacturing. I don't understand, sometimes, how members can come in and oppose visionary, significant improvements to cities like a second airport, which are self-sustaining, job-providing infrastructure with surrounding and supportive sites, including serious defence manufacturing, and look their people in the eye and say, 'I'm against this.'

This is going to transform Western Sydney. It is transforming Western Sydney. The infrastructure the coalition government is putting in place will now be enhanced by the Tallawong to St Marys missing link. And I know other colleagues strongly support what we're doing. Indeed, we've had this bipartisan commitment to getting funding to get this missing link built. I call on Chris Minns and the Labor Party as well to match the coalition's announcement and commitment to fill this missing link. Why would we build a Metro network in Sydney in 2023 where we don't complete the link? We are simply too far down the pike to not do something so important.

I want to praise the coalition state government and Premier Dom Perrottet for the announcement. I think it's going to be welcome in Western Sydney. It's certainly going to be welcome in my electorate, from Rouse Hill but going all through the electorates of Riverstone and Blacktown and, federally, Greenway, all the way to that airport. This is a very significant piece of infrastructure. It's very important to communities. It should be bipartisan. It's been the record of this government in New South Wales that they fund and provide infrastructure. There are so many projects that have been built. There are so many projects currently being completed. It isn't normal for a New South Wales government to be doing so many projects. They have set a new standard.

So I do say to people to carefully examine their choice at the upcoming New South Wales election on infrastructure and the provision of the funding for it. We have seen the Labor Party in New South Wales criticising the privatisation of assets and making it an election issue. But, of course, poles and wires was an issue that Mike Baird took to the election; he won the election strongly and funded all of the infrastructure provision in Sydney and has provided for these great announcements that we're able to make today. We must be able to fund the announcements when we form governments. I think it is disingenuous for the Labor Party in New South Wales to oppose privatisation once that issue has been contested at an election and won by the public, and the infrastructure is being provided. This is the best infrastructure Sydney has seen in anyone's lifetime, and more of it than we have ever seen. Sydney is finally starting to work.

While I have time, I also want to also want to praise the commitment to the Rouse Hill Hospital. The new hospital includes InTouch care, urgent and emergency care, day surgery units, adult and paediatric short stays, ambulances, outpatient care, rehabilitation, lifestyle medicine services and a multistorey car park. It's a great investment in infrastructure from a government that understands it's all about the service delivery in New South Wales.