Penrith locals will have a new place to cool down this summer after confirmation a portion of Penrith Lakes will finally be open to the public.
‘Penrith Beach’ will open from late December and be operational until the end of summer.
“Penrith Beach is a gamechanger that gives the people of western Sydney all the benefits of living in the west, with the addition of easy access to their very own beach,” said Deputy Premier and Londonderry MP, Prue Car.
“This is about fairness. For too long Western Sydney locals were neglected as the Liberals and Nationals focused all their energy on investment in Sydney’s eastern suburbs.
“The Minns Labor Government made a decision to create this magnificent recreation facility to give western Sydney residents their fair share with the same access to swimming as Sydney’s east.”
The same length as Bondi Beach, Penrith Beach will offer an unmatched waterside experience where people of all ages and backgrounds can safely enjoy the water for free.
Lifeguard services and first aid will be available in the designated and patrolled swimming zone.
The site will be managed by the Department of Planning and Environment after an agreement signed with Western Sydney Lakes.
“As temperatures rise, access to water near where you live has never been more important – regardless of age, ability, or postcode – everyone should have access to a safe place to cool off,” said Minister for Planning and Public Spaces, Paul Scully.
“Penrith broke records for being the hottest place on earth and another sweltering summer is ahead of us, so a place to swim is important to support public health.
“We’ve always said that communities need infrastructure to support their growth. We took this decision to support the people of Western Sydney.
“This is a location of which the people of western Sydney can be proud and which will make the rest of Sydney a little bit jealous!”
Parking will be available on site but a dedicated shuttle bus will also ferry locals from the Penrith CBD.
“I have lived in the Penrith community for over 35 years, so I know what a sweltering summer’s day feels like here,” said Penrith MP Karen McKeown.
“Since the day I was elected I have been advocating that this gem is open up for our community.
“I know just how much local residents are going to embrace and enjoy this new swimming spot close to home over Christmas and the school holidays.
“It’s an incredible amenity for families and friends to come and cool off, with the backdrop of the beautiful mountains, and I’m so proud to see this project come to life.”
The decision to create the beach for summer is a hopeful first step in public access to the Lakes, which has been the subject of much controversy and stalled development in recent times.
Troy Dodds is the Weekender’s Managing Editor and Breaking News Reporter. He has more than 20 years experience as a journalist, working with some of Australia’s leading media organisations. In 2023, he was named Editor of the Year at the Mumbrella Publish Awards.