On 8 December 2010 I ran Wednesday Forum: Re-imagining Newcastle as an initial attempt to get discussion going on future directions for the North's largest city. I followed this with Re-imagining Newcastle - and the North and then Re-imagining Newcastle - suggestions.
Last week the last post attracted a new comment that I thought that I would run in full.
Newcastle has been deliberately left down trodden by the policies of labor governments that siphon money away to Sydney and the subsequent brain drain that occurs to Sydney.
Newcastle can never replace Sydney but it can offer an experience of a culturally rich, sophisticated smaller city perhaps like Cardiff in the UK, Lyon in France or Barcelona in Spain.
To achieve this it needs two things - infrastructure and jobs. The train line needs to be maintained and expanded upon. New (old) lines put out to the suburbs to improve connectivity and bring life style benefits.
A new world class sporting stadium, to host national rugby, union and league teams and soccer and cricket. Better train connectivity to Sydney and most of all jobs.
The public service needs to have some head departments in Newcastle. Some of the Coal companies based in the valley need to have corporate head quarters there, etc. Once you get these high end jobs then money and investment as well as lifestyle bonuses such as good restaurants will flow!
Good luck with your new state campaign.
As it happened, I was in Newcastle today for a new state meeting, and my colleagues were talking about many of the same issues, as was the Newcastle Herald. I thought therefore that I would run the comment in full to continue the discussion.