NSW continues extended building hours

Since joining the portfolio in December, Roberts has abandoned the “design and place” policy project led by his predecessor Rob Stokes, which would have implemented new rules for greener and more sustainable land and property development.

Asked about Scully’s criticism on Wednesday, Roberts said he wished “Rob Stokes was and is a fantastic planning minister.”

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“All I did was listen to the industry and say, ‘Look, there could have been more consultation,'” he said. “I don’t want to put anything else in your way of achieving what you want to do and what we want you to do, which is to build more homes and better communities.

“Being Minister of Planning, no one is ever happy. Either you build, for some people, too many houses, or for others not enough houses. What does success look like? Everyone is a little unhappy. You just have to accept that. It’s not my job to be liked. My job is to do what the Prime Minister asked me to do.

Roberts acknowledged that there was “some concern” in the developer room about the performance of local governments in meeting their housing construction targets. But he said it was “important to look at the big picture, and the statistics tell us that while there is still work to be done, we are making progress”.

Priority must also be given to affordable housing, Roberts said, and indicated he would review the government’s strategy to increase the supply of social and affordable housing.

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Isabel M. Bourgeois