Stuart Ayres MP, Member for Penrith and Minister Assisting the Premier on Western Sydney today launched a new Government-funded work hub that will allow Penrith residents to work closer to home and slash commuting times.
Stuart Ayres said the new Penrith Smart Work Hub featured modern, new facilities that will enable business and trades people to carry out duties in a central “hub” facility without compromising on productivity.
“Around 33 per cent of workers living in Western Sydney commute outside the region for work. Their average travel time is up to 50 per cent longer than the Sydney average,” Stuart Ayres said.
“By locating Smart Work Hubs in areas with large commuter populations such as Penrith we can take advantage of technology to support smart working practices. “
Stuart Ayres said Penrith’s new facility was part of NSW Trade & Investment’s Smart Work Hub Pilot Program, a NSW Government initiative designed to improve productivity for the State.
“We’ve committed $1.5 million towards this pilot to establish five hubs – three in Western Sydney and two on the Central Coast,” Stuart Ayres said.
“Each hub is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities, including fast broadband, wi-fi, video conferencing, meeting rooms, kitchen facilities and IT support.
“This latest facility, called ‘iwork@penrith’, is being operated by Trexzon Pty Ltd in partnership with Penrith City Council, which is providing substantial funding support.
“It can accommodate up to 40 telecommuters at any one time and also has areas set aside for local tradespeople that can be accessed 24 hours a day for activities such as printing plans or quotes before heading off to a construction site or for invoicing.”
NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for Trade and Investment Troy Grant said Smart Work Hubs were based on a successful City of Amsterdam model, which had resulted in annual savings to the city of approximately $14 million.
“NSW Trade & Investment’s smart work hub project has the potential to provide a range of benefits, including increased business productivity, decreased infrastructure costs and increased regional economic development,” Mr Grant said.
“According to a Cisco Connected Technology World Report from 2010, seven out of 10 people are more productive when working remotely.”
For more information on Smart Work Hubs go to www.trade.nsw.gov.au/smartworkhubs