Centro Bankstown Shopping Complex

About this Item
SubjectsRetail Trading; Planning and Development; Roads
SpeakersStewart Mr Tony
BusinessPrivate Members Statements

Page: 7049

    Mr TONY STEWART (Bankstown—Parliamentary Secretary) [5.43 p.m.]: It with great jubilance that I inform the House today about a fantastic opportunity and great news for the Bankstown and surrounding region. Centro Bankstown, previously know as Bankstown Square, is set to double in size—that is right, double—as Centro Properties invest in this centre, making it one of the best shopping complexes in Australia. The complex is to be developed at a cost of about $60 million. That $60 million investment in the Bankstown region and the Bankstown central business district will give a huge boost to the morale of the people of Bankstown. They will know that, notwithstanding the fact that some would stereotype Bankstown residents, there are those who want to invest in this great region and great city area. It says that this is a place that people want to come to, where families want to live, and where people want to shop.

    It is heartening that a great Australian company, Centro Properties, has determined to make this considerable investment in the Bankstown region. Centro Properties only acquired Bankstown Square, as it was then known, in November 2002. Soon after it renamed the square Centro Bankstown, in line with its neighbouring sister complex, Centro Roselands. I am pleased to report that Centro Bankstown has wasted no time in pursuing its great development vision for the Centro Bankstown centre itself. Centro Properties has lodged a development application with Bankstown City Council for development works to the value of $60 million. Subject to development consent and Centro board approvals, the proposed development potentially will create some 2,400 employment opportunities and/or jobs in Bankstown during the construction phase and some 1,700 permanent jobs on completion.

    This massive new shopping centre will cover approximately 18,500 square metres, making it one of the biggest regional shopping complexes in Australia—and certainly the best as far as we in Bankstown are concerned. I am advised that, once started, the new Centro development will take about 12 months to complete. It is anticipated that work on the project will begin probably early next year. But, all going well, it may begin as early as August this year. I point out to the House that this Government has been instrumental in supporting this development by undertaking roadworks. I compliment the Minister for Roads, Carl Scully, who has supported my representations to have a right-turn vantage point into Bankstown, to bring the passing traffic into Bankstown. The locals do not understand the need for this, but it is aimed at others who might bypass Bankstown because they do know how to get into the CBD.

    The roadworks will involve a right-turn road network at the intersection of Rickard Road and Stacey Street, a major Bankstown intersection. There has been no such turn for 30 years, but we are now building it, and it should be finished later this year. It is a partnership though; it is not only the State Government that will cover the cost of the project. About $2 million is to be spent to build the infrastructure for a right turn into Rickard Road and Stacey Street, but Centro Bankstown, being the good neighbour that it is, has said it will put $200,000 towards this venture; Bankstown City Council will also put in $200,000. That is a great example of the Carr Government working with local government and business to provide infrastructure to achieve a desired end. In this case it is a $60 million development to enhance the Bankstown CBD, restructure the old Bankstown Square, now known as Centro Bankstown, and to revitalise the Bankstown shopping complex.

    We are at the crossroads of development in Bankstown. The new council, to be elected on 27 March, needs to take this matter in hand. I know that Centro Bankstown will work hard to enhance the Bankstown CBD, recognising that a complex of other shops around the CBD specialises in food products and a whole array of goods. The Centro Bankstown project will complement those shops. This is not a shopping complex that will detract from the plaza area of the Bankstown CBD. It is designed to enhance the whole of the area. The complex will be the best of its kind in Australia. I repeat that, although this is a $60 million development and enhancement project, the plaza will retain its speciality, and its enhancements will remain in place. Bankstown council needs to note that, and work with the Centro management team towards that end. I look forward with great enthusiasm to working with Centro Bankstown, Bankstown City Council and the business enterprises that surround this joint venture project to make it the success that I know it will be for our great region of Bankstown.