The state government has broken a 2015 election promise to deliver 450 additional commuter parking spaces at Campbelltown Rail Station.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian – who was then the transport minister – visited Campbelltown on the election circuit more than three years ago to promise a 450-space carp park if voters elected a Coalition government.
But it can now be revealed that the government has reneged on that promise and has no intention to build a car park at the busy station.
Campbelltown MP Greg Warren recently obtained a letter confirming the current transport minister Andrew Constance had officially abandoned the plan which would ease parking woes at Campbelltown.
“This was never about providing overdue relief for Campbelltown commuters, it was simply a cheap stunt before an election in a desperate attempt to win votes,” he said.
At the time of the announcement, Ms Berejiklian said she sympathised with Macarthur commuters finding it difficult to secure a parking space.
“We all know how frustrating it is trying to find a car spot close to the station," she said.
"With more people wanting to catch trains than ever before, parking is a big issue for the community and one [then Campbelltown MP] Bryan Doyle has been fighting for."
The letter Mr Warren obtained revealed the government had investigated five sites around the station for potential multi-storey car park developments.
Two were deemed too far away or unsuitable due to town planning.
Four of the five – including a Department of Planning-owned site on Langdon Avenue – are said to have required the acquisition of property which would have cost more than approved funding for the project allowed.
This left the government with one remaining viable allocation – 4 Farrow Road.
That site is owned by Campbelltown Council. The council refused to give up the land to the government, but was willing to lease it on a temporary basis while the car park was constructed at a different site – namely Langdon Avenue.
“Council was prepared to consider a short term lease of 4 Farrow Road while the State Government’s own land at Langdon Avenue was developed as a multi-level car park,” a council spokeswoman said.
“Council already provides 2.3 hectares to the State Government for commuter parking at 6 Farrow Road.”
Mr Warren condemned the government’s handling of the parking situation.
“The council’s option was sensible and practical – the state government’s was not,” he said.
“The Premier – in her capacity as transport minister – effectively made a promise to build parking on land owned by Campbelltown ratepayers without consulting the council first.
“When the government didn’t get its way, it packed up its bat and ball and went home sulking.”
Alleviating overcrowding at Campbelltown’s commuter parking stations has been one of Mr Warren’s biggest campaigns.
He launched a commuter petition earlier this year – which garnered more than 4000 signatures – calling for the urgent construction of a multi-storey car park at the site.
“Mark my words, this is an issue I will not give up on,” he said.
Mr Constance’s office has been contacted for comment.