Sydney’s growing global reputation to benefit towns in regional NSW

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Bathurst is just one town set to grow thanks to Sydney’s popularity.

We know that Sydney has a thriving economy, an enviable lifestyle and critical links with other major economic regions around the Asia Pacific.

It’s been described as an “alpha world city’’, by the Loughborough University’s Globalisation and World Cities Research Network, which measures the connectivity of cities in terms of position and influence.

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Around 50,000 people departed Sydney for the rest of NSW last year.

Sydney’s GDP is expected to grow from $440 billion to $565 billion per year in 2031.

Interestingly, Sydney’s growing prominence as an expensive global city does benefit regional NSW.

It shows up in the population movements as some 50,000 departed Sydney for the rest of NSW in the annual statistics released recently by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Regional NSW is home to 2.9 million people, and expected to grow to 3.3 million by 2036. It comprises 41 per cent of the state’s population.

For the past nine years there has been a marketing campaign pitched at encouraging relocation outside of Sydney.

The Evocities marketing campaign has been lauded, in government circles, as the most successful relocation campaign ever launched in Australia.

There are 2.9 million people living in regional NSW.

Its specific aim has been to encourage the residents of Sydney to move to one of the seven regional cities — Albury, Armidale, Bathurst, Dubbo, Orange, Tamworth and Wagga Wagga, which with a population of around 65,000, ranks as the biggest of the seven.

One of its marketing pitches has been “more rooms, less mortgage’’. Indeed it suggests the housing in these regional cities comes with a median price of around $332,000 compared to Sydney’s near $1 million. Recent regional NSW dwelling values were 4.9 per cent lower than their peak, which was less than the downturn in Sydney which sees values at around 15 per cent lower than the peak. CoreLogic did note over the past three decades that regional NSW dwelling values have been at historic highs for 38 per cent of the time, with fairly regular periods in which values had fallen. Sydney dwelling values have sat at historic highs for 45 per cent of the time.

The Evocities campaign also showcases lifestyle, suggesting living in the regions means less stress. One pitch has been “goodbye peak hour’’.

House prices in regional cities have a median of around $332,000.

The campaign also aims to change perceptions of life in a regional city noting for instance that one in every 10 NSW start-ups is based outside of Sydney. Over 150,000 people have visited the Evocities websites (evocities.com.au and evojobs.com.au) in the year to June 2019. Much of the effort is centred on finding jobs for those thinking of relocating. On average over 780 job vacancies are listed on the Evojobs website each month, with more than 50,000 jobs listed on the site since the 2010 campaign launch.

As NSW wants its Sydney residents to stay in NSW rather than head interstate, there has been a recent NSW Legislative Council inquiry into the regions which recommended the NSW government to extend the campaign to other towns.

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Apparently winter is the perfect time to embrace Evocity living, where the cooler months play host to a range of events, festivals and activities that enable community- minded families to make the most of the crisp, sunny days and starlit evenings.

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