Stronger together.

Connecting Western Sydney and the Central West.

A fast, reliable, and safe one-hour road connection between Western Sydney and the Central West.

Why?

The Western Link is a group of passionate NSW businesses advocating since 2003 for a fast, reliable, and safe one-hour road connection between Western Sydney and the Central West.

Our Story

We believe bridging the divide between the two regions will open up and revitalise the Central West to act as a pressure relief valve for Western Sydney. Both regions are stronger together.

Ease of access to the Central West is fundamental to the growth of Sydney and NSW. With Sydney’s population growing rapidly, a one-hour road connection will allow the development of new population expansion areas to ensure people have access to affordable and enjoyable lifestyles – less apartments and more houses with backyards.

This is a project that will unlock productivity, connectivity and affordability benefits that fuel economic investment and growth, more jobs, social prosperity and ensure a sustainable future for the region.

Key Benefits

Productivity

  • Advance the productive capacity of our agricultural sector and other sectors reliant on a supply chain over the mountains.
  • Improve and lower transport costs, access to new markets and potentially more affordable input costs.
  • Help the Government and businesses to capitalise on existing infrastructure commitments, namely the Western Sydney Airport and Inland Rail projects.

Connectivity

  • Drive growth in both regions and take the pressure off Sydney’s west in terms of congestion and housing choice.
  • Drive improved social outcomes by addressing population growth pressure and the liveability of
    our suburbs.
  • Provide a safer and quicker link over the mountains.
  • Unleash the tourism potential west of the mountains.

Affordability

  • Advance the productive capacity of our agricultural sector and other sectors reliant on a supply chain over the mountains.
  • Improve and lower transport costs, access to new markets and potentially more affordable input costs.
  • Help the Government and businesses to capitalise on existing infrastructure commitments, namely the Western Sydney Airport and Inland Rail projects.

What we need

We are calling on the state and commonwealth government to

Acknowledge the critical need for a one-hour road connection from Western Sydney to the Central West to secure a sustainable future for the regions and act as a growth lever.

Fully co-fund then construct the proposed Katoomba to Lithgow Great Western Highway duplication and optimise the route to minimise travel times, and bypass town centres to improve local amenity and safety.

(Stage 1)

Set up a taskforce and fund the planning phase for improving the route from Western Sydney to Katoomba to assist with disaster management, improve safety and local amenity and reduce travel times.

(Stage 2)

A position of strength

Western Sydney is a vital cog in the future growth of the state and country.

  • Western Sydney is the 3rd largest ($9.65bn) contributor to the Nation’s economy and the 4th largest city in its own right.
  • Western Sydney population growth is outstripping the NSW average and is expected to exceed 50% of the Sydney population by 2036, an increase of 700,000 people.
  • Western Sydney is a food and beverage manufacturing powerhouse, generating $17bn of output employing over 25,.000 people with $2bn of wages, and exporting nearly $2.5bn of product.
  • Western Sydney contributes over 10% of the NSW tourism market and boasts the second largest tourist attraction – the Blue Mountains.

The Central West is the third biggest economy in NSW and it’s growing.

  • Central West is expected to be the 7th largest contributor to the National Economy by 2036.
  • Central West contributes 13.5% of the states $40.5bn
    tourism economy.
  • The Central West acts as a food bowl for Sydney, generating over $1.7bn in agriculture and is essential to securing Sydney’s sustainable food supply.
  • Housing availability and affordability are high, with abundant open spaces, breathtaking natural beauty, and a high quality of life.

Precedence has proven that transport infrastructure investment, particularly roads, has spurned significant regional population and economic growth in the past.

  • An outstanding proof is that Newcastle and Central Coast population grew at five times the national average after the completion of the F3 Freeway from Sydney to Newcastle. Roads enable growth and prosperity.
Western Sydney
$9.65bn
3rd largest economy in the nation
Western Sydney
700,000
new residents by 2036
The Central West
7th largest
economy in the nation by 2036
The Central West
$1.7bn
in agriculture, the food bowl of Sydney 3rd

Challenges

The Sydney basin is at choking point which is posing a serious threat to economic prosperity and the quality of life in NSW.

  • Western Sydney has a 222,000 jobs deficit and is projected to grow by 30% to 325,000 by 2036.
  • More than 110,000 households in Western Sydney are in housing stress with 32.8% of renting households in rental stress. Homelessness has increased significantly, and social and affordable housing supply met only 40.6% of the total demand.
  • Sydney is forecast to run out of greenfield land by 2036 and is forecast to run out of industrial land by 2023 (Colliers).
  • Congestion is a major issue and will cost Sydney more than $15 billion a year by 2031.

The ‘sandstone curtain’ of the Blue Mountains is an impediment to growth and the exchange between the regions – impacting productivity, and the flow of economic and social benefits.

  • The Central West is the only adjacent region to Sydney without a suitable 100km/h transport corridor.
  • The Great Western Highway has slow speed zones (changes), contrary to the intent of a highway, increasing transport times and costs of doing trade between the regions.
  • Blue Mountains congestion impacting the quality of life in those communities and unreliable transit times for travelers.
  • Lithgow is an access point for 80% of the region’s road freight but only trucks of less than 19 metres can traverse the existing route through to Sydney.
  • Heavy vehicle movements mingle with local traffic and school zones posing a risk to road safetyto securing Sydney’s sustainable food supply.
Western Sydney
325,000
jobs deficit by 2036
Western Sydney
110,000
in housing stress
Central West
Only adjacent region
without a 100km/h road
Central West
80%
of regions freight through Lithgow