LIFESTYLE GUIDE 27 Regardless of whether the lockout laws have affected small business and killed the nightlife, one thing is certain – the laws have effectively reduced crime and hospital emergency admissions. Most notable, though, is the elevation of the real-estate potential in the area. Since the O’Farrell Government passed the laws, it was reported that residential properties in Darlinghurst and Potts Point saw up to a 25% boost in sale price. The demographic is made up of young professionals and first homebuyers, who are no longer discouraged by crime rates, prostitutes and drugs. FUTURE While the figurative death of Kings Cross in 2014 still hangs heavy in the hearts of business owners, party-goers and hospo workers, the future of this district is still bright and will no doubt retain its rich character in years to come. Much like Mayor Giuliani’s clean-up of New York City in the ’90s, yes, some soul has been sacrificed, but the streets are a little safer, the lights turn off a little earlier, and the debauchery is confined to private places and not strewn all over the strip. Kings Cross will always be the heart of Sydney, maybe just beating a little slower these days.