TWO Metro lines running through the inner west may trigger a high-rise boom in low-lying suburbs under powers being handed to a new body that runs the public transport lines.
New laws passed by the State Government have paved the way for a standalone statutory corporation to operate the Sydney Metro with an objective to "carry out the orderly and efficient development of land in the locality of stations".
The legislation also gives the Sydney Metro corporation power to acquire land to "carry out, finance, manage or otherwise participate in residential and commercial" development.
Examples of this precinct planning and rezoning approach include the 700 units planned for the top of the Metro Station at Waterloo.
With two Metro lines set to run through the inner west, councils are predicting an increase in density in low lying suburbs such as North Strathfield and Five Dock.
Strathfield state Labor MP and Opposition Transport spokeswoman Jodi McKay said the powers granted for a Sydney Metro corporation were "unheard of".
"I think this is about fattening it up for sale," she said. "Why should this agency, purported to deliver Metro services, be able to build high-rise development or a shopping centre?"