What is the planning approval pathway for this project and where is it up to?
The project is being assessed by the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) as State Significant Infrastructure (SSI). Any approval with conditions will be provided by the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces under Part 5 of the Environmental Planning & Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act).
SSI assessment requires the preparation of an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) involving specialist studies and input from a number of different government agencies, stakeholders and the community in response to the DPIE Secretary’s Environmental Assessment Requirements (SEARs). The scoping report has been made public on the DPIE website and outlines that Transport for NSW has made an application via this approval pathway given the potential for significant impacts on biodiversity, Aboriginal heritage and non-Aboriginal heritage. Where possible we will provide information about these and other topics prior to the public exhibition of the EIS.
You can view both the Scoping Report and SEARs by going to http://www.planningportal.nsw.gov.au/major-projects/project/34291
What is State Significant Infrastructure?
State significant infrastructure (SSI) includes major transport and services developments that have a wider significance and impact than just the local area. The Government has identified certain types of development that are SSI, for example:
· Rail infrastructure
· Road infrastructure
· Water storage and treatment plants
· Wharf and boating facilities
· Certain development in National Parks.
A proposal for any of the identified infrastructure types is SSI if it:
· is over a certain size
· is located in a sensitive environmental area
· would exceed a specific capital investment value
The full list of SSI development types can be viewed in Schedules 3 and 4 of the State and Regional Development State Environmental Planning Policy
When will the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) be made public?
The project team is now undertaking studies that will form part of the EIS that will go on public exhibition in early 2021.