Wyndham is a vibrant and diverse municipality located in Melbourne’s west. As one of Australia’s fastest growing cities, Wyndham is expected to be home to more than 500,000 people by 2040.

It’s also the link between Melbourne and Geelong – the two largest cities in Victoria. This makes Wyndham an area of economic significance, but careful planning and investment is needed to secure our future as a healthy, happy and productive community that will help drive our nation’s prosperity well into the next century.

We’re an industrious community with a clear vision for the future. 

It’s a community that’s skilled and ambitious, with a shared vision for realising our city’s full potential. This vision is called Wyndham 2040 – and it’s our blueprint for making sure Wyndham is a liveable, family-friendly, well-connected city where people have equal opportunity to flourish.

Wyndham City provides a range of infrastructure and services that support the wellbeing of the local community.

We run community centres and libraries, provide early years and maternal health services, and maintain local parks and open spaces. We also maintain local roads, and provide rubbish collection and waste disposal services, along with a range of other local infrastructure and services designed to improve the lives of Wyndham residents.

But there are many issues and service gaps affecting our community that we can’t solve on our own. 

We’re largely reliant on other levels of government to fund and provide the infrastructure and services our community needs to prosper. 

That’s why it’s important for us to communicate our needs and seek action from politicians, government departments, and other key stakeholders.

This is what we call ‘advocacy’ – and it’s one of the most important functions we perform.

Our first step is to listen.

We’re a local government – and that means we’re uniquely positioned to understand the grass roots issues affecting the health and wellbeing of our residents. Wyndham’s needs are constantly evolving, so we connect and engage with our community on an ongoing basis.

For us, community engagement is business as usual – and what we learn informs everything we do. 

  • Our engagement is inclusive and reaches a broad cross-section of the community, including groups that are marginalised or have limited access to mainstream channels.
     
  • Our Council receives specialist input from portfolio and place-based committees that include local residents, and stakeholders with depth of knowledge in key areas.
     
  • We keep our communities informed on our progress toward meeting their needs.

 

What we learn informs our strategic priorities and informs our decisions.

Our priorities are:

  • fostering a welcoming, diverse and inclusive city
  • being a place for creativity, arts and cultural connection
  • being safe and preventing crime
  • improving public transport and roads, and limiting congestion
  • offering better access to local services and facilities
  • providing education opportunities for all ages
  • promoting good health and wellbeing
  • creating opportunities for local employment and business development.

These priorities are embedded in the vision, plans and strategies that guide us:

  • Wyndham 2040 Vision 
  • Wyndham City Plan 2017-21 and District Plans
  • Strategies and plans governing our day-to-day operations, land use and amenity, and our provision of services to the local community.

We pursue positive change by using evidence, influence, partnerships, and collaboration

We use evidence to support our arguments for positive change. This means researching thoroughly, so that we can help decision-makers find the best way to meet our communities’ unique needs.

We seek opportunities to influence the policies of the Victorian and Australian Governments, as well as other local governments. We brief and meet with ministers, shadow ministers and MPs, and we provide input into government inquiries. We develop alliances with like-minded communities and organisations.

We foster partnerships with service providers. In doing so, we develop constructive relationships to ensure high-quality service provision, and to provide information and evidence on service gaps impacting our community. Together, we press for change and advise other levels of government on finding the best-possible solutions.

We collaborate with governments and other providers of infrastructure and services for our local area. Our approach is to help them meet their high-level policy objectives, while also meeting our communities’ unique and diverse needs.

Keep reading to find out what we need to help Wyndham secure its future as a liveable and prosperous city.

Wyndham is one of Australia's fastest growing local government areas. As such, there is an ever increasing demand for transport. However, Wyndham's transport system isn't keep up with demand. Our residents consistently tell us that road congestion and poor public transport are top priorities for government to fix.

Wyndham residents are car dependant, with many families owning more than one car. This has adverse impacts on liveability and cost of living. The dependence on private motor vehicles is not sustainable and the community needs more choices, including more frequent and reliable public transport options and active transport pathways.

 

Public transport and roads
Public transport and roads

Some of the issues that need to be addressed include:

  • Our new suburbs have too few bus services and our train station car parks are full.
  • Regional Rail Link and Werribee line trains are typically overcrowded.
  • Our roads are too congested for residents to quickly and easily go about daily life.
  • Wyndham's current active transport network has gaps that limit connectivity for pedestrians and cyclists.

 

We’re thankful for the investments the Victorian Government is currently making into road and railway infrastructure, but years of underinvestment means there’s a lot of catching up to do.

We’re calling for urgent investment from the Victorian and Australian Governments to address our transport needs, provide affordable transport choices to our community and improve life for everyone in Wyndham. 

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City’s

Responsibilities include:

  • building and maintaining local roads
    (but not arterial roads and freeways).
  • local bike and pedestrian networks.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • building and managing freeways and arterial roads (e.g. Princes Freeway, Ballan Road, Point Cook Road, Duncans Road)
  • building and maintaining public transport networks.
  • provision of train services, bus services and car parking at stations.
  • strategic bike networks.
  • road safety.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • funding for national highway network.
  • city shaping transport projects.
  • program funding for local government transport projects and road safety.

What do we need?

Road upgrades

Many sections of Wyndham’s roads have reached capacity and some are carrying far more traffic and heavier loads than they were designed for. This is causing traffic jams, asset damage, delayed bus services, environmental and safety issues – particularly for pedestrians and cyclists.

Wyndham’s commuters and freight industries urgently need upgrades to arterial roads, intersections, and freeway interchanges. We need to unclog our road network and get Wyndham moving.

We’re upgrading local roads that have reached capacity – but many of the most congested roads are managed by the Victorian Government.

The Victorian Government’s Western Roads Upgrade will help by improving some of our roads for motorists, but much more needs to be done for all users. 

Council supports the Wyndham Westlink, a continuous road link from Tarneit to Wyndham Vale and Manor Lakes, Wyndham Vale and Werribee to the Princes Freeway as one solution to help ease congestion on busy roads in Wyndham. 

We’ve analysed traffic flows and safety issues to identify state-owned roads and intersections the Victorian Government should upgrade. These upgrades must provide for an integrated network including pedestrians and cyclists.

Roads

Ison Road Overpass (to create a second railway crossing west of Werribee) as part of the Wyndham Westlink
Point Cook Road Duplication (north of Sneydes Road)
Ballan Road duplication (Armstrong Road to Bolton Road)
Sayers Road duplication (Derrimut Road to Palmers Road)

Intersection upgrades

Boundary Road and Derrimut Road Signalisation
Pedestrian operated signals on Heaths Road (near Woodville Park Drive)
Ballan Road and Evergreen Drive Signalisation
Ballan Road and McGrath Road Signalisation
Derrimut and Hogans Roads Signalisation

Bridge Grade Seperation

Wyndham Westlink

Around 70 per cent of Wyndham’s growth is occurring in Wyndham Vale, Tarneit and Truganina. Funding the Westlink – a continuous road link through one of Australia’s fastest growing areas, from Tarneit through Wyndham Vale, Manor Lakes, and Werribee to the Princes Freeway – will help to support Wyndham’s existing and future population growth.

Wyndham Westlink Stage 1 - Ison Rd Bridge Grade Separation

A continuous link connecting rapidly developing residential areas in the west of Wyndham to the Princes Freeway, Westlink will relieve high levels of congestion from traffic currently funnelled towards the Werribee City Centre and will support an existing development corridor across six gazetted Precinct Structure Plans.

The Ison Road Bridge rail overpass is a key feature of Westlink. The rail overpass will connect two sections of the planned and funded arterial Ison Road across the Melbourne-Geelong railway line, enabling freeway access from Wyndham Vale, Manor Lakes and Tarneit.

By providing a freeway connection to the growth areas it will not only support the existing and future population growth, but it will leverage the faster realisation of land tax, stamp duty and developer contributions, as well as growth area infrastructure charges.

Wyndham City and developers are already committed to the sections of Westlink that are within their authority either side of the Ison Road bridge location:

  • Lendlease, the developers of the Harpley Estate, have nearly completed the construction of a duplicated Ison Road on the north side from the base of the Ison Road bridge to Armstrong Road, and have duplicated Armstrong Road from Ison Road to Black Forest Road.
  • To the south, Council has allocated funding for the construction of a duplicated Ison Road between the Princes Highway and the base of the Ison Road bridge.

 

Wyndham City urges the State and Federal Government to support this proposal, which will significantly improve Wyndham’s connectivity and transport movement. This proposal includes funding towards the:

  • construction of a four-lane Ison Road bridge over the railway line and additional works required at the Princes Freeway interchange,
  • signalisation of the Geelong Road (Princes Highway) roundabout,
  • duplication of Ballan Road and associated Regional Rail Link bridge at the Ballan Road/Armstrong Road/Hobbs Road intersection.

 

Wyndham Westlink Stage 2 - Project Scoping & Concept Plan Design for the Ballan Road/Hobbs Rd/Armstrong Rd intersection upgrade

The Wyndham Westlink project will relieve significant and future traffic congestion in Wyndham's North and West. Wyndham Westlink Stage 2 will extend Armstrong Road north from Ballan Road, across the Werribee River and link with Sayers Road. This project will not only support the existing and future population growth in Wyndham North, but it will leverage the faster realisation of land tax, stamp duty and developer contributions, as well as growth area infrastructure charges.

The Ballan Road/Hobbs Rd/Armstrong Rd intersection is a key component of Stage 2 of this project, with Ballan Road a declared arterial road managed by DoT. The Wyndham West Development Contribution Plan (DCP) only nominates developer contributions towards the duplication of the Armstrong Road/Hobbs Road legs of the intersection. The duplication of the Department of Transport managed Ballan Road legs of the intersection is unfunded by the DCP.

Constructing the upgraded intersection will require additional lanes on Ballan Road and widening of the bridge over Regional Rail Link.

Wyndham City is seeking funding to commence project scoping and the preparation of a concept plan. This will provide more detailed information to inform a future business case for construction.

 

 

 

VLine Train

Railway upgrades

Wyndham supports the need for the Western Rail Plan upgrade and in particular electrification of the Regional Rail Link to allow for metro rail services. Wyndham also believes that the linking of the Regional Rail Link and the Werribee line would deliver great community, network and service benefits to the wider western metropolitan area.

Electrification of Wyndham Vale Line

We’re asking the Victorian Government to fund the upgrade of the Wyndham Vale Line to allow for to an electrified metro rail system and separation of the regional VLine service.

This will ensure that the Victorian rail network can continue to meet unprecedented demand and enable regional Victoria to grow and be a destination of choice.

The Victorian Government’s Western Rail Plan includes a possible metro rail link from Wyndham Vale to Werribee as part of its western section, a critical connection to link the regional and metro lines not only for Wyndham but also for the broader region. This link is therefore an important component for connecting every rail line from Cheltenham to Werribee, as noted in the announced Suburban Rail Loop.

The Western Rail Plan also includes planning for the full separation of regional and metro services on the Geelong and Ballarat lines, the first step in the delivery of fast rail to these cities; as well as detailed planning for the electrification of two metropolitan train lines to Melton and Wyndham Vale with possible new stations and additional tracks between Sunshine and Melbourne.

The current rail service to Geelong via Wyndham is diesel powered, greatly limiting its capacity. Electrification of a separate line to Wyndham Vale is already required to enable fast rail to Geelong. Bringing this forward will provide urgently needed capacity for additional trains to Wyndham Vale and Tarneit, and future stations on the line to Wyndham Vale. 

Wyndham City welcomes the Victorian Government’s proposed Western Rail Plan and encourages the delivery of the vital rail link between Werribee and Wyndham Vale, as part of the Western Rail Plan, to benefit people travelling between Werribee, Sunshine and Geelong.

Council strongly supports this proposed link to improve the connection between Werribee and Geelong. The link would integrate the metro train line with the Regional Rail Link and create more employment, economic and lifestyle opportunities for businesses and residents. Early delivery of this link is also supported as it will provide a significant benefit for both the Western Rail Plan and Suburban Rail Loop.

Regional Rail Link Stations

Trains in Wyndham are regularly overcrowded and there are not enough stations to cater for our growth areas. This means our residents are more reliant on cars, increasing congestion on local roads and causing an overflow of car parking around existing stations.

The Regional Rail Link (RRL) was one of the biggest rail infrastructure projects ever undertaken, however it is already at capacity and will not continue to adequately service Wyndham’s growth fronts.

Wyndham City is calling on the Federal and Victorian Governments to embark on a revitalisation of rail infrastructure by building four new RRL stations in Wyndham, including:

  • Sayers Road Station in Tarneit West as soon as possible.
  • Black Forest Road Station in Wyndham Vale within 3 years.
  • Truganina Station in Truganina within 3 years.
  • Davis Road Station in Tarneit West within 3 years.

Adjacent to the planned Sayers Road Station will be a major town centre and significant residential development around it. When completed, 34,000 people will call this area home. There is a steady and consistent spread of residential development moving North and West into this area. The Sayers Road Station catchment will exceed 100,000 by 2040.

In addition, the new 15,000 seat A-League stadium is also being built in Tarneit, next to the planned Sayers Road Station. These projects represent significant value capture and creative funding model opportunities. Wyndham City is continuing to call on the Victorian Governments to help build Sayers Road Station as soon as possible so Melbourne can capitalise on this unique opportunity.

A new metro station and upgrades to existing stations are needed.
We’re asking the Victorian Government for:

  • a new train station at Derrimut Road to support the development of the East Werribee Employment Precinct 
  • an upgrade to Werribee Station to improve safety, disabled access, presentation, and associated infrastructure
  • an upgrade to Hoppers Crossing Station, to improve presentation, platforms, and associated infrastructure.

Creating bigger car parks isn’t the only solution to overflowing car parks at stations

We need to provide solutions that reduce reliance on cars. Our residents should have access to frequent bus services that connect with stations, as well as cycling infrastructure and secure bicycle storage. 

We’re asking the Victorian Government to work with us on creating a local transport network that reduces reliance on car travel.

Level crossing removal

Level crossing removals are vital to improve safety, reduce congestion on the local road network, improve travel time reliability and increasing capacity to run more train on the network.

Wyndham City acknowledges the work undertaken by the Victorian Government to date for the Cherry Street, Werribee Street and Old Geelong Road level crossings projects.

We also seek Victorian Government support for the removal of the Galvin Road crossing as part of Wyndham City's proposed Wyndham Westlink project.

New and expanded bus services

We need new and more frequent bus services for residents in Tarneit, Wyndham Vale, Manor Lakes, Truganina and Point Cook. These suburbs already have large numbers of people living in new estates that have poor or no access to public transport. With Wyndham's high rates of growth, it's important that bus service coverage is reviewed every two years, at a minimum.

Wyndham residents have also raised concerns over the coordination between bus and train services, the frequency of bus services, and the hours of operation. 

In order to address current transport issues and reduce unsustainable car dependency into the future, we are asking the Victorian Government to:

  • Work with Wyndham City and key stakeholders to support and deliver new and emerging technologies and transport innovations such as on demand services, utilisation of smart technology and innovative mapping/real time solutions.
  • Improve bus services across Wyndham including higher frequencies, extended hours of operation and responsive and flexible services
  • Undertake biennial reviews of bus services to improve integration with trains and match service frequencies, hours of operation and extend service coverage to support population growth. 

Upgrades to pedestrian and cycling infrastructure

Wyndham City is a car dependent city with 61% of occupied private dwellings having two or more cars per household due to limited choice of alternative transport modes. The City also has a high rate of obesity.

An audit of the Wyndham City’s active transport network identified considerable missing links. Most concerningly, critical links to activity centres, transport hubs and educational institutions do not exist. Without addressing these missing connections, the City will remain with few viable transport alternatives to the private motor vehicle. This will continue to have a negative impact on the health of the community and on household budgets, noting that it is estimated each additional car costs households in the vicinity of $10,000 per year.

The roll out of active transport missing links across the City provides a critical opportunity to provide the community with a viable alternate to private vehicles, particularly for shorter trips and commuting to transport hubs and education. It will also ensure a network that provides for an accessible form of exercise for all community members, regardless of their ability levels or socio-economic status.

We're asking the Victorian Government to partner with Wyndham City to use the Movement and Place Framework to review the allocation of road space with the aim of delivering an integrated network for all modes of transport.

We're also asking the Victorian Government to provide funding towards the construction of the active transport missing links. This will ensure there is a connected active transport network, enabling a variety of users to walk and cycle to access their daily needs.

Research shows that high-quality early childhood, health and support services have huge benefits in terms of children’s lifelong wellbeing. We want to give our children the start in life they deserve, but local services are having trouble keeping up with demand.

Early childhood and family services
Early childhood and family services

The Education State Reform Plan tells us the Victorian Government is committed to creating systems and services that support children’s development. However, Wyndham’s population is growing faster than expected. Many of our newest community members are parents with young children – our two largest age groups are children aged 0–4 years and adults aged 30–34 years. 

We urgently need new early childhood education and care facilities, public paediatric health services, and family support centres. 

Services need to be located where they’re needed most – and funding needs to be made available so that they’re up and running when our families and children need them. 

We’re building new centres and planning innovative new service models for our community, but we need cooperation and investment from the Victorian Government. 

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City

Partners with the Victorian and Australian Governments to provide:

  • kindergarten services 
  • maternal and child health services
  • targeted services like playgroups and for first-time parent groups.

Victorian and Australian Governments

Responsibilities include:

  • planning and funding facilities and services
  • taking the lead on public paediatric health, family violence, and other health and human services. 

What do we need?

15 hours of kindergarten per week, per child

The Victorian and Australian Governments have agreed to fund 15 hours of kindergarten per week for four-year-old children in Australia. Under the agreement, state governments fund 10 hours per week, while the federal government funds the remaining five – but the Australian Government has only committed to funding until December 2021. 

The Victorian Government says it can’t pick up the slack. Without a commitment from the Australian Government, our children will only have access to 10 hours of kindergarten per week, instead of 15.

In comparison, the New Zealand Government funds 20 hours of kindergarten per week, while the UK covers 30 hours for parents who are working. Australia spends less on preschool education than most other developed countries. 

We’re asking the Australian Government to commit to long-term funding that guarantees 15 hours of four-year-old kindergarten per week, per child.

Visit I Love Kinder for more information on this campaign. 

Address Strong Demand for Kindergartens 

We’re experiencing higher-than-expected demand for kindergartens in some of our fastest growing communities. It is essential to ensure we address the current and anticipated demand for kindergartens. 

Funding is needed to address the strong demand for kindergarten and to ensure there is greater access to affordable kindergarten programs. Wyndham City looks forward to working collaboratively with state agencies on this matter.

Integrated early childhood centres

Integrated early childhood facilities that are co-located with schools and community infrastructure and services are shown to have lasting benefits for children.

Every year the growing Wyndham community needs more integrated family centres. We're committed to collocating and integrating early childhood facilities with other community infrastructure and services, such as community hubs, libraries and recreation facilities to ensure better access and community benefits. We rely on Victorian Government grant programs to fund this infrastructure with us. We urge the Victorian Government to sustain and increase these programs, especially for growth areas where high numbers of children and young people live.  

The Victorian Government’s Early Childhood Reform Plan recognises that integration makes it ‘easier for families to access early childhood facilities and provides children with a more stable transition from kindergarten to school’.3

A large number of government schools are to be built in Wyndham during the coming years. We’re concerned these are being planned in a way that won’t allow co-location. We'd like to work with Victorian Government Departments to plan and integrate community and school infrastructure.

Paediatric health and family support services 

Early access to paediatric health and family services helps children overcome developmental challenges that can have lifelong impacts. Currently, there aren’t enough of these services to meet Wyndham’s needs. 

Many families travel long distances for treatment and waiting lists can be a year or more long.

We need new paediatric health and family support services to be fast-tracked as a priority and we’re asking the Victorian Government to work with us in making this happen. Here’s what we’re asking them to do:

Fast-track a Health and Wellbeing Hub that can focus on addressing large shortfalls in allied and acute paediatric and other critical services.
Status: In progress - Wyndham City Council is working closely with the Victorian Health Building Authority and community groups on the Point Cook Community Hospital
Prioritise a Support and Safety Hub (The Orange Door) to address a shortfall in assistance for people experiencing family violence in our community
.
Locating a Early Parenting Centre in Wyndham to support local families needing support in early parenthood.
Status: Achieved

Many of our new housing estates are being built before primary and secondary schools are in place. Existing schools are struggling to cope and are becoming overcrowded. It also means many children travel long distances to attend class – and this affects quality of life.

Primary and secondary education
Primary and secondary education

We support the Victorian Government’s Education State reforms, which are designed to improve quality of learning and break the link between social background and how a child does at school. This relies on families having access to conveniently-located schools that aren’t overcrowded.

Under Victorian Government policy, Wyndham should have one government primary school per 3,000 dwellings, and one government secondary school per 9,000 dwellings. We will fall short of these benchmarks under current government plans.

Our research shows we will experience school shortages in Wyndham's growth areas, where high numbers of families with school-aged children are moving to. 

We’re asking for the Victorian Government to work with us in making sure our families have access to schools that are planned and built to meet our community’s needs.

This includes addressing the diverse learning needs of all members of our community. As our city grows students with disabilities need to be provided with access to sufficient places at schools that are designed to meet their needs.

Visit schools4wyndham for more information on this campaign. 

Who’s responsible?

The Victorian Government is responsible for planning and providing government schools. This includes:

  • choosing the location of schools 
  • deciding when those schools will be built
  • coordinating the design and construction of schools.

What do we need?

Wyndham has a shortage of schools, and we also need construction projects to stimulate our local economy. 

We are asking the Victorian Government to start building three new schools in Wyndham in 2021.
Land has been allocated for these schools and fast-tracking the construction will create jobs in the west.

These three schools are urgently needed to meet demand in fast growing new suburbs:

1. Truganina North Secondary College in Truganina
Fast-track construction starting in 2021.
2. Holyoake Parade Primary School in Manor Lakes
Fast-track construction starting in 2021.
3. Riverdale East Primary School in Tarneit
Fast-track construction starting in 2021.
Completion of P-9 Schools at Saltwater and Dohertys Creek.
Funding for construction of Stage 2 to provide much needed places in Years 7-9 in Truganina and Point Cook.
Status:
Achieved

Sites for new schools

In some areas where a school is required the land has not yet been allocated. We are asking the Victorian Government to conduct a study to find land suitable for two new schools. Schools are needed to meet demand in these suburbs but there are no planned locations available to build on

1. A primary school in Williams Landing
A state government feasibility study into potential school sites in Williams Landing is needed to identify a location.
2. A P-9 school in Point Cook
A state government feasibility study into potential school sites in Point Cook is needed to identify a location.

But fast-tracking schools shouldn't mean taking shortcuts when it comes planning and design. Hundreds of thousands of children will be educated at Wyndham's schools over the coming decades. They need schools that are well planned and properly designed so that they integrate with our fast-growing community. 

We want to work together with the Victorian Government to make this happen as soon as possible.

Schools that are designed to integrate with our community

Schools and the local community can both benefit when they make shared use of shared sporting facilities and community centres provided by local governments like Wyndham City.

There are also benefits to co-locating schools with kindergartens, health services and other community infrastructure.

Doing this integrates schools with the broader community. And by pooling resources, we can create better facilities as well as save money that can be reinvested into other services. 

The Victorian Government recognises this through its vision for schools to become integrated hubs for community learning, recreation and arts, and early childhood education and care. To make this happen, local governments like Wyndham City need to be involved in planning and designing schools.  Current planning and construction processes are not allowing this to happen.

We’re calling on the Victorian Government to work with us in co-designing shared facilities that will result in the best possible outcome for our community. 

Together we can create schools and community infrastructure that better meet the needs of our families – and are more pleasant environments that are accessible to everyone.

More local government involvement in school planning and delivery 

The Victorian Auditor General has called for the Victorian Government and local governments to work much more closely in planning and designing of education infrastructure. Doing this will help make sure our community has well-designed schools that are integrated with our community – and are ready to go when our families need them. We support this and are ready to make this happen.

Here’s what’s needed.

Local planning 

At the moment, a single committee is responsible for planning multiple schools across the state. This limits the ability to create schools that meet unique and diverse local needs. 

We think creating local planning committees will be a better way to create schools that are integrated with the community, through shared facilities and spaces.

More funding for school libraries

Wyndham City provides public library facilities for the local community, but our libraries are experiencing higher-than-expected demand from local schools who are requesting access on behalf of their students. This is because many school libraries can’t fully cater for the needs of local children.

We’re proud of creating welcoming spaces where Wyndham residents can access information, study, or simply relax with a book for free. But it isn’t fair that Wyndham ratepayers are catering for needs that should be met by school libraries.

We’re calling on the Victorian Government to fund school libraries that properly cater for the needs of local children.

Where to find more info

Victorian Government’s Education State

Wyndham is vibrant and diverse community, but the health and wellbeing of our people is lower than the rest of Victoria on average. Our community experiences higher levels of diabetes, obesity, and family violence. There is evidence that the lifestyles of Wyndham residents could be improved with greater physical activity, for example.

Health, support and inclusion
Health, support and inclusion

People’s wellbeing is influenced by many things. These include our employment, our relationships with families and friends, the layout of our suburbs, and our connection to our community.

As a local government, we’re uniquely placed to have a positive influence on health and wellbeing at different life stages. We do this by supporting the development of healthy environments, and services. But there’s only so much we can do. 

Delays in the arrival of infrastructure like kindergartens, schools, health services, roads, and public transport are some of the biggest issues affecting the health and wellbeing of our community. 

We need action from the Victorian and Australian governments to help us improve quality of life in Wyndham.

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City

Responsibilities include:

  • taking the lead on community infrastructure like kindergartens and community centres
  • providing services like disability support, youth services, and maternal and child health.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • health and human services
  • schools, police and justice services
  • urban planning
  • roads and public transport.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • health funding
  • funding for people with disability and aged care
  • funding nationally-significant transport infrastructure.
Health, support and inclusion

What do we need?

Improved family violence services

Our local communities are under-serviced by family violence support services. Wyndham has the fourth-highest number of family violence incidents in Victoria. 

Our community has also experienced a 44% increase in reported family violence incidents over the past five years. High levels of mortgage stress, social isolation, and poor access to transport networks in growth areas add complexity to this issue. 

Here’s what we‘re asking for.

 

The Orange Door - Family Violence Support and Safety Hub for Wyndham

Creating a family violence support and safety hub in Wyndham is an opportunity to put services where they’re most needed

We’re asking the Victorian Government to prioritise the placement of an Orange Door regional Family Violence Support and Safety Hub in Wyndham.   

Status: Working towards

Wyndham City encourages the Victorian Government to adopt planning processes that allow for adequate input from local councils, in line with recent recommendations from the Victorian Auditor General. Doing this will help the government to target limited resources where they are needed most. We’re hopeful that this will be addressed in future planning exercises.

 

Wyndham Justice Precinct

Wyndham City urges the State Government to fund the delivery of stage one of the future Werribee Court and Support Services Hub in partnership with Court Services Victoria, Local Governments and key service providers.

Wyndham’s current Magistrate Court has just two courtrooms, is outdated and unsafe. Wyndham's population has grown from 40,000 people to more than 270,000 since these law courts were built, and as such, it is failing to properly service the community.

Without immediate action the severity of the issues at the existing court will only increase as Wyndham’s population is estimated to surpass 500,000 by 2040.

There is also a serious shortage of support services in Melbourne’s West. An opportunity exists to address safety and service gaps in Level 2 and Level 3 Courts in Melbourne’s West, particularly at Werribee.

Status: Achieved. As part of the 2020-21 Victorian Budget, the Victorian Government has allocated $272 million towards the construction of new law courts in Wyndham.

The new precinct will include a new headquarter court with 13 courtrooms, four hearing rooms, three mediation suites and a dedicated Specialist Family Violence Court. The build will also support more Victorians back into work, creating around 400 local jobs.

Support Services Hub

Wyndham City is advocating for a Support Services Hub in the Wyndham Justice Precinct. This Support Services Hub will provide a range of justice and support services that can support vulnerable and disadvantaged people as they enter the justice system, as well as the wider community. These services will address complex underlying issues such as mental health, drug and alcohol abuse, housing concerns, financial hardship and unemployment.

 

Police coverage that services our growth areas

We’ve asked the Victorian Government to make sure police numbers increase in line with our rapid rate of population growth.

We’re also asking for the Victorian Government to ensure there’s an adequate police presence in our growth areas. 

We’re ready and willing to assist Victoria Police to improve relations with our diverse community and to improve police presence in hard-to-reach areas.

 

Health and Wellbeing Hub 

We’ve asking the Victorian Government to fast-track a Health and Wellbeing Hub that can focus on addressing large shortfalls in allied and acute paediatric services. Our growing population deserves appropriate and equal care. A plan for growth to trigger increased services should be a high priority.

Status: Achieved. The Victorian Government's commitment to build a new community hospital in Point Cook will provide these services. 

Youth Violence Prevention

Local youth support agencies, including Wyndham City's Youth Services, have been stretched beyond capacity in providing the services young people need.

We're asking the Victorian Government to:

  • provide additional resources to deliver general youth worker services across Wyndham on weekends and after hours
  • provide a resource to establish a Wyndham youth day program accessible by young people affected by alcohol and drugs
  • fund a community health organisation to establish or expand on primary and/or tertiary level services for children, young people and families in relation to mental health
  • fund a Community Support Organisation to establish a skilled multidisciplinary, early intervention, assertive outreach youth team targeting young people of young people of refugee background who have come to the attention of police as engaging in minor and serious anti-social activities
  • providing additional resourcing to Community Support Organisations to enhance their ability to assist young people to gain employment
  • provide additional resources to a deliver or support family or parenting support programs in Wyndham

Affordable housing

A lack of affordable housing can lead to overcrowding, poor living conditions, or in some cases, homelessness. In the five years between 2011 and 2016 Wyndham City saw an increase of 76.3% in its homeless population, up to 730 residents. Homeless people don’t always “rough sleep,” and estimates account for increases in people staying with relatives or friends, for example.

Council has been active in advocating for better housing support services for our community, with the H3 Wyndham Alliance partnership of agencies aiming to help more than 1700 people doing it tough in the Wyndham area. Council has employed an integration officer to help with this program.

But we need to work collectively to do more because housing is so expensive, and sometimes people find themselves unemployed, ill, or going through hard times. Victoria has the lowest proportion of social housing in the country so people have fewer options here.

Further, Victoria is not one of the states that requires its new developments to set aside a portion of housing for lower income residents. Policies for inclusion—such as ACT’s and South Australia’s housing plans mandating a certain percentage of new dwellings be affordable—would provide a safety net for many of Wyndham’s vulnerable residents, including the elderly.

The Wyndham H3 Alliance Funding

The Wyndham H3 Alliance (the Alliance) is an alliance of health, housing and homelessness organisations working together to deliver and improve housing and health outcomes in Wyndham.

Since its establishment, The Alliance has added much needed resource to the service system in Wyndham and has brought together agencies to work in an integrated fashion to respond to homelessness in one of the fastest growing municipalities in Australia.

 

Concerningly, operational funding for The Alliance is due to end in mid-2021. The Alliance is seeking the Victorian Government's commitment to provide recurrent funding for The Alliance's model and services.

 

We’re asking the Victorian Government to:

  • build more, and well-located (i.e. near services and amenities) social housing in Wyndham, and reduce waiting times for those in need.
  • require developers to either include affordable housing within developments or pay an affordable housing levy.
  • provide additional resources to prevent evictions, maintain tenancies for longer terms and for ageing residents, and ensure people leaving care or institutions have somewhere to go.
  • increase housing quality and the energy efficiency of rental housing by introducing minimum quality standards.
  • provide recurrent funding for The Wyndham H3 Alliance.

 

 

Refugee Support Services

When people seek asylum here in Australia they are wanting to be safe and to build better lives for themselves and their families. Many of them have escaped horrific conditions and extreme violence and they may not speak much English, making them feel vulnerable and unable to establish themselves easily in a foreign country. For a period of time they will need language and psychological support, medicine, food, and critical job-seeking assistance. This is where the Status Resolution Support Service (SRSS) program comes in.

We have 326 residents of Wyndham who have qualified for humanitarian visas and who will likely be affected by SRSS cuts—essentially, very few of them will now be eligible for this life-saving program.

Let’s consider the potential impacts of cuts to SRSS supports in our communities that enable refugees to look for meaningful work and to integrate into our communities.

These impacts include people’s access to basic income assistance, trauma and torture counselling, a caseworker, job counselling, vital medicine, housing, and even food for their children. 

We’re asking the Australian Government to continue to provide adequate resources to meet the needs of people seeking asylum. It isn’t fair to stop helping those who have already suffered so much as they try to make a basic start in a new country.

We’ve collaborated with other local governments in Victoria to put out a Joint Statement Against Changes to the Status Resolution Support Services program, including commitments for job readiness supports and case management. The Statement also asks for improved collaboration with local governments to better respond to local area needs.

Status: Achieved. The 2019/20 Victorian State Budget included $3 million in funding to eligibility for the Status Resolution Support Services (SRSS) program.  

Mental health services 

The fact is, we don’t have enough support here in Wyndham for our residents suffering from a range of mental health conditions. We’re asking the Victorian Government to address the critical gaps in mental health services here in our community and simply lift its spending to the national average.

Studies have shown that young people are particularly at risk of not receiving adequate mental health care—and young people in Victoria are even worse off than in other parts of Australia. Meanwhile, Wyndham has an even higher percentage of young people than the Victorian or national average!

Wyndham’s young people just aren’t getting the services they need to prevent and treat mental health conditions. We’re joining with Mental Health Victoria in calling on the Victorian Government to almost double its funding for clinical mental health care for young Victorians. This funding should be proportionate to local youth populations.

As Wyndham and the western region transitions to the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in October of 2018, we urge the Victorian Government to ensure that everyone who is currently receiving mental health care here will continue to be supported, in the same way (or better). This includes consideration for the culturally and linguistically diverse residents of Wyndham and their particular needs.

Better regulation of pokies 

The social harm caused by gambling is well known. Research shows that areas with limited access to pokies have fewer family problems and instances of domestic violence, among other issues. We were the eighth-highest Victorian municipality for gambling losses in 2018–2019. 

The Victorian Government caps the number of electronic gaming machines that are allowed in different areas. New caps were introduced in September 2017 – and we’re concerned that these were not properly reviewed before being introduced. 

We’re asking the Victorian Government to conduct a thorough review of current electronic gaming machine caps. 

There are currently 903 electronic gaming machines in Wyndham. Current government policy will allow this number to increase in our growth areas. 

We want the Victorian Government to seriously consider capping the number of electronic gaming machines in Wyndham at current levels.

We also want the stronger laws to protect our community from the effects of pokies. These should include:

  • $200 withdrawal limits at electronic cash machines in gaming venues, rather than the current $500 limit
  • maximum bets of $1, rather than the current $5 limit.

Well planned, vibrant suburbs that encourage active lifestyles

The Victorian Government has committed to creating inclusive suburbs where most of people’s everyday needs can be met within a ‘short walk, bike ride or public transport trip’. 4 This means schools, shops, cafes, parks, health services and public transport are close by and conveniently located.

This is not the experience of people living in Wyndham’s newest suburbs.

Our suburbs have too much low-density development. At the moment, shops, community centres and other facilities are being created too far apart. This encourages car use, discourages active lifestyles, and adds to road congestion. 

We’re missing opportunities to create vibrant, higher-density urban centres around railways stations and key infrastructure. But creating higher density developments isn’t enough.

Sixty-six percent of our workers leave Wyndham to go to work each day. This is because too many people need to look elsewhere to find work in their fields. We need the right mix of development and infrastructure that will attract different industries and professions that can offer a diverse range of jobs.

As a local council, we have little power over how our suburbs are planned. This is the Victorian Government’s role. The Victorian Government’s policy for urban planning is called Plan Melbourne – and we support it. But Plan Melbourne needs to be implemented properly – in partnership with local government – when suburbs are being planned.

We want the Victorian Government to fulfil its commitment to creating liveable suburbs as promised under Plan Melbourne.

The cost of health care is increasing; greater priority needs to be given to preventative health to keep people well and to reduce the burden on the hospital and primary care system. Health and lifestyle programs are especially important for promoting physical activity in outer suburbs.

That is why we support the Australian Local Government Association's All Politics Is Local ask for the federal government to promote healthier communities by investing in a Local Government Place-Based Preventative Health and Activity Program.

 

Equity of opportunity for local youth

Wyndham is on track to experience very fast growth in the number of youths aged between 12 and 17. This is a group that’s more culturally diverse than average – and we want to make sure our community is enriched and energised by this group for decades to come.

Australian youth consistently prove themselves to be invaluable contributors to our society – so long as they’re provided with access to high-quality education, training, health, and social services. They also need local employment opportunities to build a career and help them obtain a fair share in our national wealth. 

We’re a rich, prosperous country who can afford to provide better services and support for our young people. Wyndham youth need:

  • better access to further and higher education to equip them for the jobs of the future
  • high-quality health and wellbeing services to help them overcome challenges that prevent them from reaching their full potential
  • further assistance between the key transition points, for example: between primary and secondary school, English as a Second Language School and mainstream schooling.

Where to find more info

Wyndham City Plan

Plan Melbourne

Wyndham Planning Scheme

Mental Health Victoria campaign

Wyndham has a delicate natural environment that’s home to important waterways, wetlands, coastal areas, and native grasslands. We want to accommodate urban growth and be stewards of the environment that sustains community wellbeing. 

Environment and sustainability
Environment and sustainability

As a community, we embrace renewable energy, resource recovery and water conservation – and we’re committed to planning for climate change. We’re seeking action from the Victorian and Australian Governments that help us create local solutions for sustainability, adaptation, and conservation.

We support the Australian Local Government Association's initiative to strengthen Australia's circular economy through a national waste and resource recovery strategy underpinned by circular economy principles, the waste hierarchy, product stewardship and extended producer responsibility.

Who’s responsible?

Wyndham City’s

Responsibilities include:

  • managing 144 hectares of conservation reserves 
  • waste collection and disposal services 
  • litter management and waterway management.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • creating and managing certain parks and reserves
  • managing state energy and utility infrastructure
  • collecting landfill levy and managing the sustainability fund
  • irrigation and water supply
  • protecting coastline and native vegetation.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • national energy policy
  • national environmental policy
  • national parks
  • environmental protection
  • biodiversity conversation.

What do we need?

Better irrigation systems for Werribee’s farmers

If you’re reading this, the chances are you’ve eaten broccoli, lettuce or cauliflower produced in Werribee South. The market gardeners situated there produce much of the high-quality produce that finds its way onto Melbourne’s dinner tables. But our market gardeners also pay some of the highest prices for water in Victoria.

It’s a problem that’s made worse by irrigation infrastructure that’s almost 100-years old and wastes up to 40% of the water it distributes. This water could go back into the system to increase water allocations for farmers – or for much needed environmental flows into the Werribee River.

We’re thankful that the Victorian Government has provided $11.4 million to upgrade irrigation systems. 

We need a further $11 million from the Australian Government for the irrigation project to go ahead. 

Furthermore, the water used in local farms and market gardens is often more saline than is recommended for growing certain crops. This is especially the case in summer, when farmers depend on water the most.

We’re asking water companies like City West Water and Melbourne Water to reduce salinity in our water supply.

 

Creation of the Western Grassland Reserves

Wyndham is developing at a very rapid rate – and we urgently need to set aside parks and reserves that protect the most valuable parts of our natural environment. 

The Western Grassland Reserves will be important habitat for endangered species and preserve wetlands, waterways, red gum swamps, and grassy woodlands. 

The area is situated to the west of Werribee – just north of Little River. To create the reserves, the Victorian Government needs to buy the land from existing owners – and they committed to doing this some time ago. In the meantime, nearby development creates a risk to delicate ecosystems and wildlife. 

We need to create these reserves sooner rather than later so that this precious part of our local environment can be properly preserved and maintained.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to prioritise acquiring the land for Western Grassland National Park. 

Existing property owners also need to be engaged so that they understand the acquisition process and can work with us in maintaining the grasslands until the reserves are created.

We’re also asking for $250,000 per year for Wyndham City to fund community engagement with owners whose land will be acquired to create the reserves.

 

Environment and sustainability

Funding to make landfill a last resort (Municipal and Industrial Landfill Levy)

Not enough money is being invested to upgrade waste disposal facilities so that more waste is recycled rather than buried as landfill. This needs to change.

Wyndham City has one of the largest landfills in Melbourne. This 223-hectare site doesn’t just service Wyndham – it’s also the destination for rubbish collected by other local governments and commercial operators.

A levy is charged whenever rubbish is disposed of at our landfill site. This is called the Municipal and Industrial Landfill Levy. The levy was introduced to reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfill. Not enough of the levy is being spent on this.

Wyndham City has one of the largest landfill sites in Victoria – and much of the waste arrives from neighbouring areas. This means we collect large amounts of landfill levy and pass it on to the Victorian Government, which decides how it will be spent. Over the last six years, we’ve collected over $114 million dollars’ worth of the levy – but we’re concerned that too much of this money is being diverted away from landfill reduction programs. 

In 2015-2016 alone, Victoria sent 4.2 million tonnes of waste into landfill.4 Much more of this waste could be recycled or turned into energy.

Around 60% of our household waste goes to landfill 5 – we want to reduce that to 10%, with the rest being recycled and recovered. 

We have the technology and knowhow to make landfill a last resort. We want the Victorian Government help us get there by investing more of the levy toward its original purpose – reducing landfill.

We’re asking for a substantial investment to build a local waste disposal facility that can recycle and recover 90% of our waste.

Kerbside collection of organic waste

40 to 50% of our household waste is food waste and other organics. At the moment, most of us empty this into our garbage bins which are then sent to landfill. 

When organic landfill decomposes it creates large amounts of methane, a greenhouse gas that’s thought to be 86 times worse than carbon dioxide. 

Instead of sending our organic waste to landfill, we could reduce carbon emissions by using this material as compost or as a source of fuel. We can do this by introducing separate rubbish bins which can then be collected by local councils.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to mandate kerbside collection of organic waste across Victorian municipalities.

Reforms to encourage renewable energy and storage

We applaud the Victorian Government’s long-term target of net zero emissions by 2050. Wyndham City wants to do its bit by using renewable energy and battery storage to power our facilities, but our energy laws and regulations make it hard for us to do that.  

We’re asking the Victorian Government to change the system so that it encourages installation of decentralised renewable energy generation and storage systems.

Residential energy efficiency

We acknowledge the Victorian Government’s energy efficiency package as a great first step to help Victorian’s improve the energy efficiency of their home. 

To further improve the energy efficiency of households, we’re asking the Victorian Government to:

  • Mandate energy efficient standards for rental housing to help overcome the lack of incentive for landlords to ensure their properties are energy and cost efficient to live in.
  • Mandatory disclosure of household energy efficiency performance at the time of sale or lease.

Encourage the uptake of low-emission vehicles

We are pleased to see the Victorian Government’s rollout of a fast-charging network for electric vehicles across major highways and key tourist destinations. Wyndham City is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and working towards a low carbon city.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to reconsider the proposed standalone road usage tax on electric vehicles without broader policy reform around sustainable transport and road funding.

 

Integrated Water Management Assets (i.e. stormwater harvesting, water storage, alternate water sources)

Our future urban and agricultural communities need reliable and affordable water as our climate continues to change and our population grows. This is why we support the Victorian Government’s long-term aim of reducing water consumption through the Water for Victoria Plan.

We want to do our bit too.

We’re seeking Victorian Government funding to help our city use water in smarter and more efficient ways.

Understanding the effects of climate change on our coastal communities

Climate change is happening and we need to understand how this will affect us. Storms, sand movement, erosion, and rising seas are expected to cause rapid changes to our shores and coastal wetlands. By researching the effects on our coastline, local, state and federal governments can prepare and plan for any adverse impacts on our coastal communities. 

We’re seeking long-term partnerships with land managers and the Victorian Government to make sure we understand how our coastal communities and environments will be affected by climate change.

We also support the Australian Local Government Association's All Politics Is Local campaign for the federal government to invest in a Local Government Climate Change Partnership Fund to support local government communities in their climate change response.

Where to find more info

Environment & Sustainability Strategy 

Waste & Litter Strategy

Integrated Water Cycle Management Plan

Transport infrastructure, health services and economic growth are foundational to our wellbeing. But healthy, well-connected communities also rely on a vibrant arts and culture scene, as well as plenty of sport and recreation opportunities.

Arts, culture, sport and recreation

Eighty five percent of Australians believe that the arts make for a more rich and meaningful life.7 As a local government, we see our local arts sector as being crucial to liveability. However, recent downward trends in national funding for the arts present a challenge. 

Sporting and recreational facilities also play an important role by promoting physical activity and house sporting clubs that help bind our community together. Participation promotes social inclusion, healthy child development, and helps with anti-social behaviour. But, rapid population growth has made it difficult to keep up with demand.

We’re seeking government support to make sure the health and wellbeing of our community is reinforced by an energetic arts sector and active sports and recreation culture.

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City

Responsibilities include:

  • providing neighbourhood arts and sporting infrastructure
  • helping to develop and support local artists 
  • creating local exhibitions, events and cultural projects.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • funding and investment in arts infrastructure and our cultural institutions
  • partnering with local government to nurture local creative economies
  • funding for sporting infrastructure and programs.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • funding for artists and arts organisations
  • tax incentives
  • supporting artists to take their work to the international stage
  • funding for national sporting institutions and infrastructure.

What do we need?

Land allocated for cultural infrastructure 

The Victorian Government plans the overall layout of our new suburbs and sets aside land for schools and sporting facilities. This is done based on population – for example, we’re supposed to have one football oval per 4,000 people. This doesn’t happen for cultural infrastructure like galleries, community arts centres and cultural spaces. 

We want the Victorian Government to work with us in making sure land is set aside for cultural infrastructure.

Funding for galleries, community arts centres, film/multimedia facilities, and studio spaces 

Established inner-city suburbs tend to have unused buildings and spaces that can be reclaimed or co-opted by artists. However, Wyndham is a growth area that’s still being developed, which means there aren’t many buildings available for this purpose. Funding for new arts spaces is available to regional areas, but outer growth areas like Wyndham miss out. 

We’re asking for outer growth areas to receive funding so that we can build the arts and cultural spaces our community needs.

We’ve also been working toward establishing a regional art gallery in Wyndham. This will create a major cultural tourism destination and be a source of pride for the Wyndham community and the west. It also has potential to create economic and social benefits for the area. 

We’re asking for $1.25 million to begin design work on a regional art gallery. 

Tax incentives to create artist spaces

A vibrant arts cultural scene relies in part on spaces being made available for artist-led activity. This activity should occur in areas that are accessible, rather than places that are out of the way and hard to get to. However, spaces in vibrant, well-connected urban centres can be too expensive for our artists to access. 

We’re asking for tax incentives for commercial landlords to offer industrial or retail property leases for artist-led activity.

Quality arts education for our government schools 

Arts programs in government schools are under-resourced. Additional government funding is only available for schools that have a relationship with an established, professional artist. 

Unlike schools in more established areas, many of our government schools don’t have natural networks that make it easy to connect with such artists. This means many of our students don’t have the same opportunities to engage with the arts, compared to children living in inner-city suburbs. 

We’d like to work with the Victorian Government in developing funding that will help Wyndham’s schools to engage with artists who can connect with our diverse school communities.

More funding for libraries

Libraries are community hubs that provide free and equal access to services and programs that contribute to lifelong literacy and learning. They have a positive economic impact on the local community as well as improving community wellbeing through the provision of free, communal spaces, resources and social connection programs

Wyndham libraries attracted more than a million visits in 2018/19. In the same year there were 1.6 million loans from the libraries' collections. There were also over 80,000 attendances at a Wyndham Libraries program during this time. Wyndham, like other local governments, is committed to the ongoing provision of high quality, public library services that meet the growing and diverse needs of our community. 

Library funding used to be shared 50:50 between the State and local government. However, funding by successive Victorian governments has failed to keep pace with the growth and expansion of services and Councils now bear 80% of the cost.

 

Better funding for sporting infrastructure in growth areas

Wyndham City is the main provider of sport and recreation facilities within our community – but meeting the needs of our rapidly growing population is challenging. 

Much of this infrastructure is raised from developer contributions and the community infrastructure levy. The Victorian Government sets the amount we can raise, and current levels aren’t enough to cover the cost of the facilities our rapidly growing community needs. 

We estimate we’ll experience a funding shortfall of $414 million leading up to 2045. We need a long-term funding increase to help us bridge this gap.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to work with us in developing sporting infrastructure grants that are more suited to the unique needs of outer urban growth areas.

We’re also seeking a sustained funding increase for community infrastructure through the Growing Suburbs Fund.

Incentives for investment in joint sporting infrastructure

There are significant benefits to be had when schools and the community share sporting infrastructure. Joint investment and maintenance mean we pool resources that create better facilities for everyone.

We’re keen to work with the Victorian Government and create shared infrastructure that better serves our school communities, as well as the Wyndham Community at large. 

We’re asking the Victorian Government to collaborate with us in the early planning of joint-use sporting facilities that will better serve our school children as well as the general community.

Where to find more info 

Sports and Recreation Victoria

MAV's libraries campaign

Wyndham City Statement of Commitment (to reconciliation)

Wyndham City Arts and Culture

Wyndham City Sport, Parks and Recreation

Wyndham’s Aboriginal Culture and History

In 2016 Wyndham’s economy grew faster than the Victorian average, yet 66% of Wyndham’s workers still leave the municipality to go to work. We want more diverse employment opportunities so that more of our residents can work close to home. 

Economic Development and Industry
Economic Development and Industry

When people work locally, it stimulates the local economy and reduces travel time – which in turn improves quality of life. We want the Victorian and Federal governments to invest in infrastructure and support programs that will attract a diverse range of industries and support local enterprise. This will also help to reduce local unemployment, which is currently 1% above the Victorian average. 

When it comes to investing in outer growth areas like Wyndham, research shows that the benefits outweigh the costs. Jobs will be created, tax revenues increased, and the nation will benefit from a permanent boost to GDP. We’re asking the Victorian and Australian Government to commit to this vision.

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City

Responsibilities include:

  • helping to sustain and grow the capacity of local business
  • supporting local tourism
  • encouraging regional exports
  • encouraging local sales and expenditure 
  • promoting local job growth.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • setting state taxes and levies
  • state transport infrastructure
  • facilitating innovation & investment
  • job creation
  • tourism.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • setting federal taxes and levies
  • national economic reform
  • foreign affairs and trade
  • telecommunications
  • national transport infrastructure
  • financial regulation.

What do we need?

Freight infrastructure

Melbourne’s west is already the destination for 30% of freight from the Port of Melbourne – and it's expected to receive much more in coming years. Existing freight infrastructure next to the Port of Melbourne has limited capacity and truck access is difficult due to inner-city congestion. This transport bottleneck represents a drag on Victoria’s economy.

We’re calling for the Victorian and Australian Governments to coordinate their efforts in planning and funding a solution. Wyndham can and should be part of the solution.

We support the Australian Local Government Association in its call for the federal government to fund a Local Government Higher Productivity Investment Plan starting at $200 million per annum over five years.

We’re also seeking the development of a Western Freight Infrastructure Investment Plan to coordinate the following projects.

Construction of the Western Intermodal / Interstate Freight Terminal (WIFT)

The WIFT (and the associated rail link at Truganina adjacent to the Outer Metropolitan Ring Transport Corridor) will accommodate the majority of the Dynon rail yard interstate traffic once complete. 

Land acquisition and construction of the south-west section of the Outer Metropolitan Ring (OMR)

Road and rail is needed to connect the Princes Freeway to the Western Freeway, and the WIFT to the national transport network via Geelong. The OMR will also significantly improve freight movements to and from regional Victoria. 

Construction of the Melbourne Metropolitan component of the Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail

This rail link will connect with the WIFT – and a future second container port at BayWest – with the east coast rail freight route.

Secure Work and Local Jobs

The economic impacts of COVID-19, which increased unemployment and created higher levels of mortgage and rental stress, have been particularly felt among people who live with insecure work.

In 2020, casual employees made up an estimated 22% of workers living in Wyndham, and many of these were employed in industries that have hardest hit by the pandemic. Wyndham also has a high proportion of young people, who were more exposed to the adversely affected industries

Many other workers are concerned about their security of employment too. A community survey conducted in 2020 showed that 44% of Wyndham residents felt worried about their job security.

While Wyndham City has taken steps to support our local community in difficult times we need a partnership with other governments and other stakeholders to improve work opportunities in the outer suburbs.

Our capital cities need better planning and investment that supports distributing infrastructure and jobs more evenly across the entire metropolitan area, including bringing new jobs and more secure work closer to where the growing population lives.

State and federal governments can help create more jobs in growth areas by supporting the development of local industries, taking a proactive and strategic approach in attracting high density commercial development, and relocating their offices to urban centres like Wyndham.

Local jobs have the added benefit of enabling people to work close to home with short travel to work time and less reliance on motor vehicles. When workers can spend more time with family and friends this also creates stronger communities.

To ensure these jobs are taken up by local people we also need ongoing support for enhanced employment services for people who need assistance finding work.

Enhanced employment services

Wyndham is an extremely diverse community, with almost half of our residents born overseas in 162 different countries. Wyndham is also younger and more diverse than Greater Melbourne, with 58 per cent of residents under the age of 35. Unfortunately, Wyndham also has one of the highest youth unemployment rates in Victoria, with one in 10 young people not engaged in work or study. As Victoria recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic, enhanced employment services must continue to be part of the plan.

Wyndham City calls on the Victorian Government to:

  • continue funding the Jobs Victoria Employment Network;
  • continue funding the Community Revitalisation Program and its Fresh Start Employment Pathways Program;
  • continue funding the Community Support Group Program; and
  • roll out an integrated, place-based employment service for disadvantaged job seekers and for Wyndham to be selected as a preferred location for this program.

Grants provided by Federal, Victorian and Local Governments are working in conjunction with private industries to foster the change we need. Wyndham City is thankful for the previous support our community has received from the Victorian Government.

To ensure vulnerable members of our community continue to receive much needed social and economic support, Wyndham City recommends that projects under the following programs be funded as part of the 2021-22 State Budget.

Jobs Victoria Employment Network: Wyndham City seeks the continuity of funding for Wyndham’s involvement in the Job Victoria Employment Network. This funding will support our efforts in tackling local unemployment, including youth unemployment.

Fresh Start Employment Pathways, a program of Community Revitalisation, is a job readiness program that has been delivered in Wyndham for the past few years.

The program provides support for all young people, with a priority to support young people of the Pasifika and African communities in Wyndham – many of whom face barriers to employment.

To date, over 100 young people have completed the program and linked to employers in retail and hospitality.

Wyndham City seeks the continuity of funding towards this important program.

Community Revitalisation supports local communities across metropolitan and regional Victoria to develop new pathways to employment for people facing entrenched barriers to meaningful, ongoing work.

Projects are place-based in their design and delivery in that they respond to local resources, strengths and the input of local community members, service providers and industry partners. Community Revitalisation projects are underway in nine places in metro Melbourne including Werribee and Tarneit.

Wyndham City seeks the continuity and sustainability in the funding and administration of this program.

Community Support Group Program aims to strengthen youth engagement in South Sudanese and horn of Africa communities and ensure that young people and their families are linked into activities and services in their areas. Programs have been funded in various regions including Wyndham, Melton and Dandenong.

The focus of a Community Support Group is to link people to an integrated range of programs and activities such as education, training, employment pathways, health and human services, sport and recreation and other community activities.

Moreover, Wyndham City urges the Victorian Government to work more closely with the Federal Government in rolling out an integrated, place-based employment service for disadvantaged job seekers that builds on the employment trial underway with local job provides local Jobactives and Jobs Victoria providers. It is vital that the place-based approach to rolling out employment services is built on, with Wyndham identified as a preferred location.

 

Development of Avalon Airport

Melbourne’s air traffic continues to grow. Avalon Airport is well positioned to service Melbourne’s west – Victoria’s fastest growing region – as well as Geelong and surrounding regional areas.  

The commencement of international flights at Avalon Airport adds impetus to the further development of the terminal as an international destination utilised by a multitude of carriers.

The recent announcement that Avalon will accept international air traffic adds impetus to further develop the facility. 

We’re asking the Victorian and Australian Governments to continue supporting the development of Avalon as Melbourne’s second airport.

Stimulus for regional supply chains 

As Wyndham’s population continues to surge, it’s important for local jobs growth to keep up. We need a strong local economy so that Wyndham residents can work closer to home. This will have important social, environmental and economic benefits for our community and the nation at large.

We welcome the introduction of a Victorian Local Jobs Commissioner in 2017, whose role includes increasing access to government contracts for local small to medium enterprises. We also recognise there are opportunities to build on this progress.

The Victorian Government can assist by requiring infrastructure projects to include a minimum amount of goods or services sourced from the immediate area. This will help develop local supply chains that will stimulate the local job market.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to review the Victorian Industry Participation Policy. This review should consider options for making sure infrastructure projects are better used as a way of stimulating the job market in areas surrounding construction zones.

Business Support Programs

Council applauds the State Government in initiating a suite of business support programs in response to COVID19.

In requesting that the level of funding does not diminish substantially post COVID, Council would like to see the adoption of funding programs which support the specific needs of each region. Rather than applying a top down approach and state government determining the criteria for funding Council seeks the opportunity to be a “broker” of business funds made available to our local businesses with Council, in collaboration with government, determining how funds can best be allocated to drive localised economic sustainability

Support for our farmers and market gardeners

Our local farms and market gardens are an important part of Melbourne’s food bowl, but fragmented ownership and small land holdings mean some farming operations are becoming unsustainable.

Our farmers need support so that they can improve yields, increase profits, and sure up their long-term futures. We also need strategies to support farmers seeking to exit from the industry.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to provide an agribusiness support service to help our local farmers and market gardeners.

Tourism Funding for Wyndham and Outer-Suburban Areas

Wyndham’s tourism industry generates $498 million per year,7 yet we can’t get access to important tourism funding from the Victorian Government. Current schemes focus on the Melbourne CBD and regional areas, while outer-growth areas like Wyndham miss out.

The Werribee tourism precinct – featuring the Werribee Open Range Zoo and Werribee Mansion – attracts over 1.4 million visitors to the region each year. This shows that Wyndham deserves to be recognised as a proven tourism destination.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to give outer urban areas a fair go when it comes to tourism funding.

Wyndham is close to nature and nearer to the CBD than many of Melbourne’s outer eastern suburbs  but living here also has its challenges. Our community is under strain because infrastructure and services haven’t kept up with our rapid population growth. 

Urban development and financial sustainability
Urban development and financial sustainability

Many families travel long distances to reach schools and places of work – and there’s poor access to public transport and health services in some areas.

Research shows that poor access to infrastructure and services leads to a lower quality of life. It also means people have fewer opportunities to reach their potential. With proper planning and investment from the Victorian and Australian governments, we’ll improve living standards and build a strong, nationally-significant local economy.

As a nation we need to focus on creating suburbs that are not only affordable, but also liveable. We’re calling for a new approach to urban development that makes this a reality.

Whose responsibility is it?

Wyndham City’s

Responsibilities include:

  • providing community infrastructure like sporting facilities, community centres and kindergartens
  • promoting and protecting local aboriginal arts, culture and heritage
  • issuing planning permits for building work within the municipality.

Victorian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • the vision and framework for urban planning
  • making laws and providing funding for protection of cultural heritage 
  • laying out where roads, housing, employment and infrastructure will go 
  • major roads, public transport, hospitals and schools
  • deciding funding levels for local government to provide community infrastructure.

Australian Government

Responsibilities include:

  • funding nationally-significant public transport projects like the Regional Rail Link
  • native title and indigenous affairs
  • funding other major infrastructure projects of national significance.

What do we need?

North & West Melbourne City Deal

One in three Victorians and one in 12 Australians live in the fast-growing North and West Melbourne region, which by 2036 will have a population larger than South Australia. It is the region hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, against a backdrop of some of the highest unemployment rates in the state

The North and West Melbourne City Deal Plan is a blueprint for the region to respond to the impacts of the pandemic in the immediate and medium-term, and to reform our economy for the future.

The proposal will help create 300,000 new jobs, reboot business, boost social and economic inclusion, and leverage the region’s existing strengths in health, food production, manufacturing and logistics. It will unlock employment and economic development opportunities centred on the eight key precincts, which includes Werribee.

Without a City Deal, North and West Melbourne is facing a crisis – a significant lack of jobs coupled with the massive impact of COVID-19. A City Deal presents the region with huge opportunities and an essential springboard for recovery.

This proposal is a cross-sector effort to arrive at a joint list of priorities before consideration of formal MoU arrangements with Commonwealth, state and local governments. These priorities include the following projects which are located in Wyndham:

  • Western Rail Plan
  • New A-League Stadium Value Capture
  • Western Interstate Freight Precinct
  • Outer Metropolitan Ring Transport Corridor
  • Suburban Rail Loop
  • Westlink Ison Road Bridge
  • Wyndham Refuse Disposal Facility

Wyndham City – as part of the LeadWest Committee and guided by the City Deal proposal - looks forward to engaging with our Federal and State counterparts in the drafting of the North and West Melbourne City Deal

Less out-of-sequence development

Out-of-sequence development happens when people are permitted to move into housing estates before infrastructure and services are properly in place.

Out-of-sequence development causes poor quality of life within local communities. It creates social isolation, long commutes, and poor access to basic services like schools, parks, community centres and health clinics.

We’re calling for a new approach to urban development that makes sure this doesn’t happen.

We want the Victorian Government to work with us in making sure development happens in line with the rollout of infrastructure and services our community needs. 

We understand that the development industry sometimes wants to press ahead with new housing estates when demand is high. But in growth areas like Wyndham, this can mean there are multiple locations needing infrastructure at the same time  – and that makes it harder for governments to deliver what's needed.

Rolling out community infrastructure and services ahead of schedule causes higher costs. Currently, these costs must be met by the Victorian Government and local governments like Wyndham City. Under current funding arrangements, there isn’t enough money to cover these costs.

We have developed a system to better coordinate the delivery of local infrastructure where growth is occurring and we need a system that creates a role for developers to assist with raising funds for the early rollout of infrastructure and services in out-of-sequence developments.

Out-of-sequence utility service provision can mean that local government needs to pay to retrofit or redesign brand new developments with the necessary infrastructure.  We need state-wide measures and better planning that prevents utility companies from taking shortcuts that result in Wyndham City ratepayers picking up the tab. We’re ready to help the Victorian Government develop and enforce these measures.

Better protection and promotion of the rich, living Aboriginal cultural heritage of Wyndham

Wyndham City wants to make sure that in partnership with Traditional Owner organisations we protect and promote the rich, living Aboriginal cultural heritage of Wyndham for future generations. More resources are needed to work with Traditional Owner organisations to identify, protect, and sensitively interpret and celebrate Aboriginal places of significance.

We’re asking for adequate funding for Wyndham City to collaborate with Aboriginal representatives in comprehensively mapping, protecting, and celebrating Aboriginal places of significance and land management practices across the city.

In particular we need resources to enable greater and earlier involvement of Traditional Owner organisations in planning and design processes. Traditional Owner knowledge of Country could inform and influence planning and design of suburbs to enable better connection with our Aboriginal heritage.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to collaborate with Traditional Owners and local government in planning our new suburbs so that they better incorporate local Aboriginal culture and heritage.

Better Victorian infrastructure planning 

The Victorian Government has special funding set aside to create infrastructure for fast-growing communities like Wyndham. These funds are collected from a levy called the Growth Areas Infrastructure Contribution (GAIC). 

GAIC funding is not available to fund many of the important infrastructure projects Wyndham desperately needs.

We have more people that commute for two or more hours a day than any other municipality in Victoria. Road congestion, poorly-connected suburbs and overcrowded rail infrastructure are having a big impact on our residents’ quality of life.

Investment in transport can have huge social benefits. It reduces time spent in cars and encourages more active lifestyles. It can create more time for people to spend with friends and family. It can also reduce social isolation in growth areas, and improve access to activity centres and community facilities. 

Together with partners in Wyndham and the western suburbs, we are asking to work in partnership with the State government to create an overarching development contribution framework which:

  • Provides an overarching strategy, coordination and role clarity
  • A plan for monitoring, evaluating and reporting GAIC outcomes
  • Council’s active participation in the identification of projects for GAIC funding.

We want "bang for the buck" significant investment for our community. 

Increased funding for the Growing Suburbs Fund

The Growing Suburbs Fund supports investment in critical local infrastructure in Melbourne's diverse and fast-growing interface and peri-urban councils, which are also home to some of Victoria's most vulnerable communities.

As a group, the interface and peri-urban councils comprise 30.4 per cent of Victoria’s population. For over two decades, population growth in these areas has exceeded the State’s average, and this trend is expected to continue with more than 1 million additional residents expected to be living in the interface and peri-urban areas by 2031.

Since 2015, Wyndham City has received funding through the Growing Suburbs Fund towards the construction of various local infrastructure projects including upgrades to community spaces, and improvements to local sport and recreation facilities.

The 2020-21 round of the Growing Suburbs Fund saw an increase in eligible proponents - from 10 councils to 16 councils. However, the total funding allocated through this round has declined.

Wyndham City calls on the Victorian Government to provide ongoing commitment to the Growing Suburbs Fund, and increase this program's funding to an amount that reflects the increase in eligible councils and the unique challenges faced by interface and peri-urban communities.

A fairer funding system for growth areas like Wyndham

Wyndham City is responsible for providing a range of important infrastructure and services for the local community. The problem is that we don’t have full control over how much money is available for us to do this.

The Victorian Government regulates the amount of money local councils can raise through rates – but the current approach isn’t providing us with the resources we need. 

We work very hard to make sure we deliver value for money and improve efficiency in our operations and we support measures that reduce unnecessary costs and red tape.

But Wyndham is growing faster than expected. We need to provide infrastructure for new residents before they arrive, as well as providing for our existing communities. This means we need more funding than established areas of Melbourne.

We’re asking the Victorian Government to help us raise the money needed to create liveable suburbs. We advocate with the National Growth Area Alliance for high growth rates to be properly considered when the Victorian Government sets funding levels for local governments in growth areas.

A one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work.

We also need state-wide measures that prevent utility companies from taking shortcuts that result in Wyndham City ratepayers picking up the tab. We’re ready to help the Victorian Government develop and enforce these measures.

Restoring local government funding through Financial Assistance Grants

More than 20 years ago local government received 1% of total Commonwealth revenue through Financial Assistance Grants. Despite the pressing need for a strong, reliable flow of federal funding into local infrastructure Financial Assistance Grants now amount to just 0.55%.

Local communities, including Wyndham, are worse off when there is insufficient funding for the infrastructure and assets residents need in their day-to-day lives. 

That is why Wyndham supports the Australian Local Government Association's call for the next federal government to restore core local government funding of Financial Assistance Grants to at least 1% of Commonwealth taxation revenue.

National solutions to local challenges

Australia’s population has been rapidly increasing for many years. Much of this increase is concentrated in outer-urban growth areas like Wyndham. 

The scale and rate of development means Wyndham and other growth areas are of high national importance. Our community will double in size in the coming decades – and this makes it even more important to get urban development right. If we do, we’ll foster a healthy, highly-productive community that will help drive our national prosperity well into the next century.

Together with the National Growth Area Alliance we’re calling for a National Growing Outer Suburbs Taskforce to focus on the challenges we face in growth hotspots like Wyndham. This taskforce would bring together ministers from a range of portfolios so that they can collaborate in finding solutions that help create happy, high-functioning communities. 

We support calls for a National Growing Outer Suburbs Fund that can help cover the high cost of building community infrastructure in Australia’s rapidly-expanding outer-urban growth areas.

Wyndham to be recognised as a Metropolitan Activity Centre (MAC)

Melbourne remains a very CBD-centric city and we need to start thinking about it differently. Technology is freeing industry, people and jobs from geographic constraints. We’re committed to being a Smart City that helps our residents prosper from this economic transformation.

The focus of our planning should be on developing urban and regional centres and connecting them with each other. We want to enable industry, people and jobs to move freely between our urban and regional centres, rather than being concentrated in a congested Melbourne CBD. 

The Werribee City Centre and adjacent East Werribee National Employment and Innovation Cluster (NEIC) should be recognised in the State Government’s Metropolitan Strategy (Plan Melbourne) as a Metropolitan Activity Centre (MAC).

The development of the Werribee City Centre as a focus for regional commerce, specialty retail, entertainment, leisure, and community services will assist in achieving a potential of over 58,000 jobs.

We’re calling for a shift from Melbourne CBD-centric planning towards an approach that recognises the importance of urban centres. Correct this imbalance and create a hyper-connected network of Metropolitan Activity Centres and transit zones such as the Werribee-Geelong corridor.

We advocate with the National Growth Area Alliance for job creation in peripheral areas so that people can work closer to home.

Where to find more info 

Wyndham Residential Growth Management Strategy

Plan Melbourne

Victorian Planning Authority

Australian Local Government Association's All Politics Is Local campaign