Special Activation Precincts

Special Activation Precincts (SAPs) are defined by the New South Wales (NSW) Government as areas with the potential to activate state or regional significant economic development.  

An innovative place-based solution, the NSW government is drawing on the AUD4.2 billion Snowy Hydro Legacy Fund to contribute towards making Future Ready regional communities. Specifically, the regions will prosper both socially and economically from the windfalls of major public and private investment to create jobs, attract businesses and investors, and fuel economic development.

Graham Pointer, WSP's Future Ready Country Lead

“Regional Australia is the backbone of our nation and we are committed to providing our skills and knowledge to help create and sustain resilient hubs for innovation and future ready places for people.


“By designing our regions with the future in mind, we are helping them to realize opportunities that will see them thrive for generations to come.”

Graham Pointer, Future Ready Country Lead

Strategic Planning and Stakeholder Engagement

With an in-depth knowledge of the community and its surrounds, we acknowledge and appreciate the complexities of regional development. Considering the concerns climate change brings, how we plan for 100 years into the future is paramount to the long-term viability of our communities.

As part of the SAP, our team has worked closely with our stakeholders to implement thorough Ecological Sustainable Development plans, flood and water quality management studies and conducted field surveys to assist in maximizing the sustainability of the regions. This includes tackling key issues such as energy efficiency, navigating extreme drought and flooding events as well as hotter temperatures and a drier climate.

We have further utilized our indigenous design specialists to engage and implement the input of the local Wiradjuri people throughout the master planning phase of both SAPs. Together, we created and planned for communities that reflected the traditional owners of the land and their heritage as well as sacred sites and places of spiritual meaning. To better connect the precincts and to promote inclusiveness we incorporated their designs into public art and landscaping initiatives.

With our multi-disciplinary involvement covering industries such as transport, environment, water, energy and sustainability, our advice has assisted the government in reducing approval waiting periods down to its goal of 30 days. This is a key element of each SAP as it helps to provide the private sector with enough certainty to invest in the regions.

Wiradjuri sites graphic representation | WSP

Image source: Michael Hromek, Technical Executive – Indigenous (Architecture), Design and Knowledge, WSP

Freight train in a railroad | WSP

Once-in-a-Generation Projects Delivering Outcomes for Communities

WSP has played an active role in establishing resilient precincts that encourage people to live, work and play in the region.

With the once-in-a-generation Inland Rail project acting as the cornerstone of the Parkes and Wagga Wagga SAPs, we have been at the forefront of development in these regions since the project began a decade ago. At various points, we have mobilized our multi-disciplinary services to provide our clients with the gold standard in service.

The SAPs for both regions are designed to build upon the opportunity provided by Inland Rail to boost their economic activity and provide investors with attractive opportunities to pursue competitive advantages in specialty areas. For the community, new infrastructure provides them with improved social and economic prosperity and will lead to greater inflows of investment given the expected growth in population.

In the two regions we have focused our efforts on capitalizing on their respective strengths. For Parkes, the first designated SAP, planned development has focused on increasing its high-value agriculture sector while spending in Wagga Wagga has focused on transitioning the power grid towards renewables, while also advancing its interests in manufacturing, agribusiness and freight and logistics.

Our team has been active on other key projects such as the new Riverina Intermodal Freight & Logistics Hub in Wagga Wagga, as well as the Parkes Bypass and Pacific National’s intermodal hub which will improve both road and rail connectivity.