The rate of high-rise residential development continues to soar around Sydney’s fringe suburbs, and with it a booming population that seeps ever-further out the CBD. But this influx of residents begs the question: what will they eat?

In Burwood, that question is close to having its answer. The area has been one of many around Sydney that has changed so drastically as to become nearly unrecognisable from a decade ago. The inner-western suburb has seen a slew of new operators pop up in recent years, as well as several existing icons – such as the Burwood Hotel – undergo character-changing upgrades.

This re-configuration of the area isn’t slowing down, either. The site across the road from the Burwood Hotel has been selected as the future home of a five-tower development of up to 49 storeys, approved last year by Burwood Council.

Now, plans have been revealed for something just as big. Rather than residential, this latest initiative has a more culinary bent. By as early as 2018, the entire block of land around Burwood Hotel will be transformed into a food precinct in the style of East Asia’s open marketplaces.

The new food precinct will, in fact, act as an extension of the existing pub. Part of the Burwood Hotel’s recent renovation was the creation of a modern Asian-style kitchen. The next step is to spill this offering throughout the surrounding alleyways and available buildings. An entire new restaurant (or multiple; a decision that has yet to be made) and a permanent hawker-style market all form part of the grand culinary plan.

At this stage, the construction timeline for Burwood’s food precinct is unclear. However, Blairgrove Group – the company behind the development – have estimated that all restaurants and food stalls will be operational by January 2018.