In a coup for western Sydney, the Federal Government has agreed to support a $29.5 million employment park in the heart of Werrington.
The Werrington Park Employment Catalyst will be a business centre specialising in the areas of health, IT and other technology intensive industries, co-located on the University of Western Sydney Werrington South campus.
On Wednesday, Minister for Population and Communities, Tony Burke, formally made the announcement that funding to the tune of $13.5 million would be made available this financial year under the Suburban Jobs program.
“In many projects we see large increases in short term employment during the construction phases and then those job opportunities taper off,” he said.
“Here, in the end it looks like the number of job opportunities will double.”
Mr Burke said that the project is the first real opportunity where, instead of building housing where jobs are located, the jobs are being brought to the people.
“This is not a case of building an empty shell and hoping that the jobs will follow, we are engaged with the local business community through the Penrith Business Alliance and Penrith City Council,” he said on Wednesday.
Construction of the business park will be completed by June 30, 2015.
“I am determined to ensure that our local community becomes a centre of innovation, employment and education,” said Federal Member for Lindsay, David Bradbury.
“This project will drive employment and innovation in the western Sydney region, as well as provide much needed quality office space for local businesses.”
UWS Vice Chancellor, Rhonda Hawkins, praised both the Federal Government and Mr Bradbury, for the opportunity to co-locate the business park within the university grounds.
“I understand that once a seed is planted, it can take some time to grow, but the Government’s response has been fantastic and we are sure to see our efforts come to fruition,” she said.
“The University will be straining its resources to make this happen but we definitely think it will be worth it.”
Once completed, the first stage of the business park will create 400 to 500 permanent jobs and be connected to the National Broadband Network.