AS the Liberal Party’s anointed candidate to run against Clover Moore in the upcoming Sydney mayoral race, Christine Forster is promising to revamp Oxford St and champion marriage equality if she takes the top job.

Currently serving as a councillor on the City of Sydney council, Forster believes the city’s iconic Oxford St precinct has lost its energy.

 “The area around Oxford Street is the spiritual, historical and cultural heart of Sydney’s LGBTI community,” she told Star Observer.

“That’s why it’s so disappointing to see this important place losing its energy, with so much Council-owned property unused and falling into disrepair for no reason other than Clover Moore’s lack of vision.

“As Lord Mayor, I will look at providing funding for the establishment of an LGBTI exhibition and museum space on Oxford Street, to not only showcase contemporary LGBTI artists, but also to highlight the history and achievements of the LGBTI rights movement.

“I will also look at retaining the T2 building for use as an LGBTI community centre and providing Council-owned space on Oxford Street for the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Business Association to use as a Fishburner-style hub facility.”

The local government election will be held on September 10 with Forster, who lives in Surry Hills, saying it’s an honour to be chosen to contest the city’s top job.

“I’m Sydney born and bred, and I’m passionate about making my city the world’s best place to live, work and visit,” she said.

“Over the last few years, our city has lost a lot of the energy that makes us unique. Sydney is currently punching below its weight, with high streets standing empty as council dithers over the use of its massive assets.”

Forster reinforced her commitment to improving Sydney’s environmental sustainability and will release her plans to reduce the City of Sydney’s environmental footprint in the coming weeks.

“Sydney is at a crossroads. We need a fresh approach, new ideas and energetic leadership. It’s time we got on the front foot to get our city humming again,” she said.

Forster, a mother of four and sister of former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, gained national notoriety in 2012 when she was outed as lesbian.

Forster will go up against incumbent mayor Clover Moore, who will be running for her fourth term as mayor, and Labor candidate Linda Scott.

“At the end of the day our greatest asset as a city is our people. The City of Sydney is known as a diverse, respectful and inclusive community, something that I hope to build upon as Lord Mayor,” she said.

“If elected, I will use the office wherever I can to advance the cause of marriage equality and social inclusion”.

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