An artist's impression of the Parramatta light rail.


An artist’s impression of the Parramatta light rail.

Dozens of high-profile businesses have united to lobby the state government to build a light rail line from Parramatta to Sydney Olympic Park. 

The group – which includes Allphones Arena, ANZ Stadium and the National Roads and Motorists’ Association – has launched a big campaign to rally for the construction of the Olympic Park route before  three other options. 

More than $50,000 had already been committed to a “fighting fund” by the end of a meeting attended by almost 30 businesses on Monday morning.

The proposed routes.

The proposed routes.

Sydney Olympic Park Business Association chief executive Karen Grega said the group was tired of being overlooked and was ready to make a stand. 


“We will be in there putting our case forward. We don’t think Sydney Olympic Park is understood properly and it’s just not on the government’s radar,” Ms Grega said.

“Sydney Olympic Park is drastically lacking in transport. We believe any improvements are still playing catch-up.”

The state government is considering which of four possible light rail routes should be built first.

The four routes are Parramatta to Macquarie Park via Carlingford, Parramatta to Castle Hill via Old Northern Road, Parramatta to Bankstown and Parramatta to Sydney Olympic Park and Strathfield/Burwood.

The Sydney Olympic Park route has until now received less public championing.

The mayors of Ryde, Parramatta and The Hills Shire are all supportive of the Macquarie Park line. Parramatta state MP Geoff Lee is also backing the route.

However, the group’s case has been bolstered by the government’s Plan for Growing Sydney, released on Sunday, which includes a focus on developing the precinct between Parramatta and Sydney Olympic Park.

The government has also approved two “priority precincts” in the Sydney Olympic Park area, with significant commercial developments planned and thousands of new residents set to move in. 

The meeting, also attended by Deloitte, AECOM, and the Australian Turf Club, agreed to launch a “Badgerys Creek-style campaign” that will include residents, councils and private businesses.

The attendees flagged future discussions about how private businesses could contribute financially to construction of the line.

Sydney Olympic Park, which was officially made a suburb in 2009, has a daily population of 17,500 and holds about 6000 events every year.

Michel Kenny, the chief executive officer of the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW, which runs the Sydney Royal Easter Show, said outside of big events there were no dedicated transport options for people working or living in the area. 

“This is a living, breathing Olympic legacy. A lot of money was put into the park by government  for the 2000 Olympics, it really needs to be continually reinvested,” Mr Kenny said. “Light rail would be a heartbeat.”

ANZ Stadium managing director Daryl Kerry said the light rail was also a “golden opportunity” and had widespread support throughout Sydney.

Transport NSW planning and programs deputy director general Anissa Levy, who attended the meeting, said Sydney Olympic Park had a strong case when it came to future need but was weaker than other routes when it came to present demand.

Ms Levy said all four routes would cost about the same to build but she would not say when a decision would be made.

The government has put $1 billion towards funding the light rail and has previously said construction would start in the next term of parliament.