Monday, 4 January 2010

Region. Debate over M4 toll

CEOs of Infrastructure Partnerships Australia, Australian Industry Group, the Property Council of Australia and the Tourism and Transport Forum have requested Premier, Kristina Keneally, to reverse Nathan Rees's decision and maintain the M4 toll, due to cease on February 15. David Henscher, a professor of economics at Sydney University and a transport expert, said if the road was put into private hands for the next 20 to 30 years and the toll charged, as much as $2 billion could be raised. The Treasurer, Eric Roozendaal, is understood to have argued during cabinet debate late last year for retention of the toll, but failed in the argument, The Sydney Morning Herald reported. The Transport and Roads Minister, David Campbell, said the Government had a long-standing position to remove the toll. ''And that position hasn't changed.''


Parramatta. Harris Farm closes down

Harris Farm has closed its outlet in the Brand Smart retail complex, in the Parramatta CBD. Reasons for the closure are not yet available. Since David Jones moved from the site, to Westfield Parramatta, a decade or so ago, the complex, under several owners, has failed as a retail centre. Prior to Harris Farms’ departure nearly all of the 50 plus tenants, other than a newsagent, a fast food outlet and the Sydney Technical Institute, a hospitality-training centre, have left. The head offices of Landcom and Suzannegrae, a women’s fashion group, and the NSW office, of Sportsgirl, are tenants in the Brand Smart Corporate Centre.