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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 5 Hansard (3 May) . . Page.. 1488..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

The committee has, in general, given support for an additional arterial road connecting to Gungahlin Drive at the Barton Highway, with provision for both private and public transport, on a route to the east and south of the Australian Institute of Sport; identified the need for planning for public transport, including the integration of public transport facilities with road requirements and the development of dedicated routes for inter-town public transport facilities; and recommended that the government confirm the timetables for the construction of other major road upgradings and improvements aimed at facilitating access to Belconnen and Gungahlin, including the duplication of William Hovell Drive between Bindubi Street and Coulter Drive, a personal favourite of the chairman of the committee, the addition of a third lane in each direction to Parkes Way between Edinburgh Avenue and the Glenloch Interchange, the duplication of Gundaroo Drive from Mirrabei Drive to the Barton Highway, the completion of a third northbound lane on Northbourne Avenue between Antill Street and the Barton Highway, and the early construction of Horse Park Drive from Gundaroo Drive in the Gungahlin Town Centre to the Federal Highway at the Majura Road interchange, and it requested that the future status of Majura Road and the Monaro Highway be determined.

Mr Speaker, the government agrees with the focus of these recommendations, with only minor differences in approach on some implementation issues. Many of the road upgradings, other than the Gungahlin Drive extension, have already been identified in the government's forward capital works program announced in the year 2000 budget. Design work on the duplication of the Barton Highway from Bellenden Street to Northbourne Avenue is already well advanced, with construction expected to commence in July 2001. The project includes a grade-separated interchange with Gungahlin Drive over the Barton Highway as part of the initial works. The interchange design and project funding have yet to be agreed-the speech says that they have been agreed, but they are yet to be agreed-with the federal Department of Transport and Regional Services.

Duplication of Gungahlin Drive from Wells Station Road to the Barton Highway is presently being designed. Construction is scheduled to commence in May 2001, with completion in mid-2002, shortly before the completion of the Barton Highway duplication. Construction of Horse Park Drive as a two-lane rural arterial road is scheduled to commence early in 2002, with completion early the following year. Duplication of William Hovell Drive east of Coulter Drive is also scheduled to commence early in 2002, with completion early in 2005.

Mr Speaker, the government has allocated funding for the Gungahlin Drive extension in its five-year road construction program, with commencement in April 2002 and completion in May 2005, subject to the outcome of the Legislative Assembly's consideration of the committee's report and the government's response to it. The government recognises the importance of development of a longer-term strategy in relation to the Monaro Highway to the regional and national roles of that route and to the need for seeking Commonwealth recognition of the route as part of the national highway system. The government will be pursuing this matter with the Commonwealth.

The government agrees with the majority of the committee in recommending support for an eastern alignment for the Gungahlin Drive extension. The government believes that the eastern alignment achieves a high level of transport provision while minimising impacts on the Bruce precinct. I note that Mr Corbell has submitted a dissenting report to the majority of the committee on the alignment of the Gungahlin Drive extension. The

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