Christmas has come early for Sydney with the beginning of works next week on the Darling Harbour Live project which will be a shot in the arm for the visitor economy, according to peak national industry body Tourism & Transport Forum (TTF).
TTF Deputy Chief Executive Trent Zimmerman said the new integrated precinct is an investment in Sydney’s future and in Australia’s tourism industry.
“Sydney is about to enter a new era with the Darling Harbour Live project set to transform the precinct, delivering reinvigorated public spaces and world-class events facilities that will boost the visitor economy,” Mr Zimmerman said.
“Sydney has been missing out on business events and hundreds of millions of dollars in economic activity because the current facilities don’t have sufficient capacity.
“The new facility will give Sydney the biggest exhibition space, the biggest meeting space and the biggest plenary space in the most advanced facility in the country, allowing Sydney to bid for and host multiple major business and entertainment events simultaneously.
“The inclusion of a premium hotel on-site is also a significant boost for the precinct and for Sydney generally.
“Having an integrated precinct including the entertainment and convention centre, retail, dining and accommodation will reinvigorate Darling Harbour, attracting locals and visitors alike, and link the precinct to Chinatown, Ultimo and Pyrmont.
“Congratulations to the New South Wales Government and the Darling Harbour Live project company on the next step in this transformative development.”
Mr Zimmerman said the centre will drive employment and foster private investment.
“NSW has been missed out on 170 conventions and more than $150 million over the last five years because of a lack of appropriate convention and exhibition space,” Mr Zimmerman said. ““This project will encourage further investment in other tourism assets like hotels and attractions, which will drive further economic activity and create more job opportunities for New South Wales.”
“Attracting business events to Sydney will benefit regional NSW as well, with many such visitors taking the opportunity for some leisure travel as well, often with family members or friends, further adding to the return to the state’s economy.”