Fears Sydney Is Becoming A “Part-Time” City

As more people choose to work from home

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Sydney’s business lobby has dubbed the capital as a “part-time city” as more and more people chose to work from home.

Business Sydney Executive Director Paul Nicolaou said those who are capable of working in the office should be doing so if Sydney is to be considered Australia’s top city.

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“Sydney cannot be a part-time city, we’ve got to be full-time,” Mr Nicolaou told The Daily Telegraph.

“We need the dry cleaners, newsagencies, cafes and restaurants because if we’re going to be the number one city in Australia and the number one city in the Asia/Pacific, we can’t be part-time.”

Mr Nicolaou suggested working from home could also affect future leaders’ success, saying “they’re not going to learn from teams or zoom [meetings]”.

“You want people to come into work because it adds to the economy, collegiality, connectivity and networking that you want in your staff and you want in your team,” he said.

Last month, The Guardian published an article explaining how working from home also affected other businesses like cafes and restaurants.

York Lane’s café/bar owner Dieter Steinbusch told The Guardian his business has seen a 40 per cent drop in trading compared to pre-pandemic numbers.

“Imagine how you’d feel if someone took that amount out of your wage. People are coming up with any excuse not to go to the office. But I’m still here, I’m part of the resistance,” he said.

Choosing to not go into the office has decreased the city’s foot traffic, meaning things like morning coffees or lunch at a café with the colleagues are reducing in regularity.

However, there have been many to voice their support for the opposite side of the argument, saying working from home supported those feeling the pressure of rising cost-of-living and providing better flexibility to accommodate for work/life balance.

Hosted by Sacha Barbour, This Arvo in Sydney is a 10 to 12 minute daily news podcast made just for Sydney! Listen now on the Listnr app.

Tricia Mifsud

15 May 2023

Article by:

Tricia Mifsud

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