Transport Minister Andrew Constance has blamed Sutherland Shire Council for the government's selection of a commuter car park site at Jannali, which requires the compulsory acquisition of nine homes.
But, Opposition spokesman on transport Chris Minns called on Mr Constance to "grow a heart and explore all the other possibilities first".
Mr Constance said Transport for NSW had been trying to work with the council for 18 months on identifying a site, with the main focus on the council-owned car park behind the shopping centre, which Woolworths also wants to develop.
He said the government had made a commitment two years ago to build the facility and, six months ago, he wrote to the council advising, "We cannot wait any longer" and the government would "proceed on its own".
The council had not replied, he said.
The media was given a copy of the letter to then mayor Carmelo Pesce, dated September 7, 2020, the same day as a media release was issued.
Mr Constance said the present mayor Steve Simpson needed to explain why the council did not reply to "the letter from a Minister of the Crown" and, if he had a better alternative, as he has indicated, "let's hear it".
Mr Constance also called on Cr Simpson to release the minutes of meetings held in confidential sessions on the proposed Woolworths development on the council car park, which would include apartments
"He needs to come clear on his development plans for the site and respond to the letter," the minister said.
Speaking about the affected home owners, Mr Constance said he was "desperately sorry these lives have been turned upside down".
"I couldn't think of anything worse than have somebody knock on your door and saying 'we need to take your home', but this is the challenge when building this type of infrastructure," he said.
"So, if mayor Simpson has another solution, put it up but don't go around saying there is another site unless you are prepared to say what site it is."
Mr Constance said he understood, of the nine properties to be acquired, two were rented and another was going to auction, leaving six directly affected.
"Everyone gets compensated, and I know there are some individual circumstances which will require the agency to go above and beyond, and that's what will happen," he said.
"It's part of the challenge when we go and do acquisitions anywhere, whether it is Jannali with nine properties or a metro with hundreds of properties."
Mr Constance said Transport for NSW officials visited property owners directly before anything was released to the media.
Miranda MP Eleni Petinos, who is also the Parliamentary Secretary for Transport, said her involvement in the project was purely as the local member.
Ms Petinos said she had not been present at any meeting between the council and Transport for NSW, and had not yet met affected residents.
"I have every intention of meeting with my constituents and ensuring their needs are being met through this process," she said.
"It is unfortunate that the timing has coincided with parliamentary sitting days when I am required to be in the city," she said.
"I will continue to work with my community and ensure my community's needs are being met through this process."
Asked why the media release she issued announcing the project did not include the fact that nine properties were to be acquired, Ms Petinos said, "It gave you the precise location".
"We have been very forthcoming with answers to all of your questions," she said.
Ms Petinos added, "We have been open and transparent with the community".
"He needs to grow a heart and explore all the other possibilities first," Mr Minns said.
"My message to the NSW Government is this - go back and start again. Consult the people of Jannali about where they want their car park. Discuss other options with the Council.
"I understand why these residents are angry. Imagine getting a message from the transport minister that you have six months to get out or he will take your home off you.
"A blame game between Liberal minister Constance and the former Liberal mayor does nothing to help these residents."
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