Disruption on the vital route to infrastructure progress in Sydney
It's a rare thing to see governments run advertising campaigns that send a simple message: we're going to disrupt your lives.
Yet, that's precisely what the NSW government is doing on the looming effects of its infrastructure boom.
From the expansion of the metro rail project, to light rail, or WestConnex, these projects present Sydney with a challenge as you can't easily retrofit a city – and the epicentre of activity will be in the CBD.
The government has had two difficult jobs to execute in advancing its infrastructure agenda.
The first was financing the work by winning the argument for asset recycling.
The Property Council was vocal in its support for this approach as it was the best way to fund major projects.
The second will be maintaining public support through the construction phase as people question the value of the inconvenience.
Property owners are working with government agencies to mitigate the effects on everything from retail trade to delivery vehicle access to the intersection between public and private construction schedules.
However, as long-haul investors in our cities, property also sees the end-game benefits: better productivity, mobility, livability and urban amenity.
There are three big pluses to the infrastructure spend: along with housing construction, infrastructure investment will underpin much of Sydney's economic trajectory for the next decade; projects like the metro rail will transform the way we manage our network – bringing in private capital and using world-standard technology; and all these projects add to the capacity and efficiency across the rail, road and freight networks.
Business as usual won't cut it for the CBD, with forecasts of 100,000 extra employees inside 15 years. Sydney's CBD has a small footprint by global standards and we need to place a premium on using spaces like our roads and footpaths efficiently.
That is why it would also be a mistake to make light rail the whipping boy for shifts in the way cars, buses and people move in, out and through our city. These broader changes were flagged in the City Centre Access Strategy released in 2013.
We're seeing that translated into action, with projects large and small. These projects are essential parts of Sydney's continued evolution as a global city.
The need to nuance their delivery to ensure it is as seamless as possible is clear. However, so, too, is the ultimate prize: a better CBD.