Thursday, 21 January 2010

Region. West Metro expidited

The NSW Government would expedite the $8.1 billion West Metro, senior government sources said, according to The Sydney Morning Herald. Sources said construction of the CBD Metro line, ending at Pyrmont, not Rozelle would start this year, concurrently with the West Metro. planning approval for the West Metro, an 11-station, 24-kilometre underground line from Westmead and Parramatta to Central station, was believed to be under way. It would be funded out of the Government's $180 billion Transport Blueprint. There would be no federal funding. The Government is expected to finalise an environmental assessment in the first half of this year.


Blue Mountains. Resort operators criticised

Blue Mountains Tourism Limited (BMTL) chairman, Randall Walker, delivered his harshest criticism of the current owners of the downgraded York Fairmont Resort, in Leura, singling them out as causing the most damage ever to the Blue Mountains’ good reputation, according to The Blue Mountains Gazette. The hard line stance follows the owners’ (Michael Kwok and Helen James, since 2007) failure to lift standards, stem negative guest feedback and appoint as promised a recognised and experienced brand to manage the resort — or even a general manager with hospitality experience. “In the history of tourism in the Blue Mountains region no single operator has ever inflicted so much damage to the industry and reputation of the destination,” said Mr Walker. The Gazette contacted co-owner Helen James for a response to Mr Walker’s comments but had not received a reply.


Region. UWS offers up 16 per cent

The University of Western Sydney is making 10,160 main round offers to students - the largest number of offers of any university in NSW and the ACT. UWS Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning and Teaching) Professor Stuart Campbell, said UWS had significantly increased its number of main round offers this year - up 16 per cent on 2009 - particularly in the areas of health and nursing, education, business and arts. "Of the 10,160 offers UWS is making, we're particularly pleased that 70 per cent are to students within our own Greater Western Sydney region,” he said. UWS continues to be a university of first choice, receiving the second highest number of first preferences in NSW.


Richmond. Farming course to move

Richmond will lose a Keyline farming principles course as participants have been denied access to Keyline properties, at North Richmond, according to the Hawkesbury Gazette. A field trip to the land, formerly owned by P.A Yeomans, who developed the Keyline system of land enrichment, could not happen due to denial of access by the new owners. Participants were instead taken to two properties in the Camden area, which use the Keyline system on a smaller scale. A total of 70 farmers attended the recent three-day Keyline Design Course run by education provider, Milkwood Permaculture, at UWS Hawkesbury recently. Participants came from as far as the United States, Queensland, WA and Tasmania. The Federal-Government-subsidised course covered the principals of Keyline, and how farmers can implement it on their properties. It was the second Keyline-dedicated course run by Milkwood. The first in March 2008 had 40 participants.


Liverpool. Freight terminal or stadium

The Federal Government had yet to rule what wouldl be done with land at Moorebank which has been sighted as an intermodal freight terminal, said Michael Deegan, of Infrastructure Australia, who was asked to examine whether the site could be used for such a facility. Readers of the Liverpool City Champion suggested it be used as a back-up soccer stadium as part of Australia's 2018 or 2022 soccer World Cup bid


Region. Help for Haiti

Castle Hill-based company, Amway, will donate $US100,000 for Haiti relief efforts. It will be given to the American Red Cross and the SOS Children’s Villages to aid in relief efforts. “We will also match donations from staff and Amway business owners,” said Amway Australia GM, Michial Coldwell. Northern district Rotary clubs are uniting to provide life-saving ShelterBoxes to earthquake victims. The kits, which cost $1200 each, contain a tent, blankets, water purification and cooking equipment, basic tools and other items to support 10 people in the short term. “In the past three months, clubs in our Rotary district have purchased 43 ShelterBoxes to be ready to support such a tragedy as this,” said Rotary’s Peter Smith. Liverpool City Council will vote, on February 15, on a motion calling on them to provide financial assistance.


Bankstown. Jobs boost at airport

Currently it is estimated that Sydney Metro Airport Bankstown has created either directly or indirectly over 6000 jobs. “We further estimate that over the next 20 years an additional 10,500 jobs will be created. We strongly support providing employment opportunities for both employers and employees in the local area. Our Aviation Careers Expo is just one way supporting employment growth,” the Sydney Metro Flyer e-newsletter. Approval has been granted for the commencement of civil works by Western Earthmoving to provide a new vehicle storage area of approximately 5 hectares for Pickles Auctions expansion at the eastern end of the airport complex.

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