A new plan for the Illawarra-Shoalhaven hopes to ensure growth, prosperity and stability for the region.
The Illawarra-Shoalhaven City Deal is a partnership between four local councils: Wollongong, Shellharbour, Kiama and Shoalhaven, to develop a plan for change in the region.
The deal places priority on ten key projects including the Nowra Riverfront Mixed-Use Precinct Development, Further development of the Albatross Aviation Technology Precinct, Kiama Arts and Cultural Precinct Development and South West Illawarra Rail Link.
Regional Development Australia Illawarra Chair Eddy De Gabriele said the transformative inter-regional City Deal would secure long-term economic resilience.
"The development of this City Deal has been a major collaboration between RDA Illawarra, the Illawarra Shoalhaven Joint Organisation (ISJO) and stakeholders in local government, university, peak industry bodies and the private sector," he said.
"The result is a unified, agreed range of economic transformative projects which, when approved as a City Deal by the NSW and Federal governments, will catalyse our economic development. By governments investing in this region, the entire state of NSW will benefit."
The University of Wollongong and Property Council both welcomed the deal between the four local councils.
Property Council Illawarra regional director Michelle Guido said the announcement came at a crucial time.
"This announcement is a reflection of true collaboration in our region... as we navigate the challenges of COVID-19, prepare for growth, opportunities for investment in our local economy and continue to provide jobs, jobs and more jobs," she said
"The three pillars of the Illawarra-Shoalhaven City Deal - Transformative Infrastructure, Visitor Economy and Economic Resilience - and the associated projects will be an absolute game changer for this region, which combined will deliver 12,5550 jobs over the decade."
UOW Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Wellings said the university had long worked with councils and peak bodies to pursue regional development strategies that enhanced community prosperity.
"The vision and program outlined represent a considered and confident package of initiatives that can drive the transformation of the Illawarra-Shoalhaven and position our region for economic and employment recovery," Professor Wellings said.
"Considerable effort and collaboration by key organisations, including UOW, has been applied to define and agree on a suite of initiatives that address transport infrastructure, the visitor economy and economic resilience across Wollongong, Shellharbour, Kiama and the Shoalhaven."