Plummeting home affordability highlights need for reform

Reports of plummeting home affordability highlight the need to reform the planning system, according to the Sydney Chamber of Commerce.

"With housing construction in Sydney at near 1950s levels, we need to act now before a generation is priced out of the great Australian dream," Mrs Forsythe said.

"When it comes to reform, we need to look at streamlining the development process so that developments which comply with all the standards proceed without delay.

As part of the Coalition for Planning Reform, the Sydney Chamber of Commerce this week called for an across the board 30 per cent cut in the processing times for development assessments (DA).

"Too much development is being delayed by the political machinations of local councils. If we are serious about housing affordability we need to look at ways to fast-track complying development.

Mrs Forsythe has also called for the need to depoliticize the development assessment process by introducing Independent Panels, like those which are used in South Australia.

"Independent panels will provide greater transparency in the planning system, while facilitating the efficient delivery of sustainable growth.

"There are no simple answers when it comes to housing affordability, but we must continue to reform our planning system to better reflect the needs of our growing city.

"Housing affordability is a critical issue for the Sydney business community. Affordability impacts upon our competitiveness as a business destination and the capacity of companies to attract and retain staff," Mrs Forsythe concluded.

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