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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: Week 5 Hansard (4 May) . . Page.. 1731..


MR CORBELL: It will be a pleasure to do so, Mr Speaker, and hopefully members will do me the courtesy of letting me outline what it is all about. The other elements of the transport plan include: extending off-peak period concessions and working to improve walking strategy, in particular through new urban design initiatives. As well, we have very valuable TravelSmart initiatives-something which has not achieved a lot of interest in this place. However, members would be interested to know that the government is now working in consultation with organisations such as real estate agents so that people moving into new parts of Canberra are given information on how they can structure and make more sustainable their travel choices.

For example, we are working with real estate agents in Belconnen, Mrs Dunne. We are targeting people who are moving into Belconnen for the first time. TravelSmart consultants are going out to those households, talking with the new house owners and taking them through what their travel options are; explaining to them what are the available bus services; explaining to them the walking and cycling routes that exist and how effective and easy they are to use. That sort of thing changes travel behaviour. It is a worthwhile investment, it is funded for in this budget in the measures I announced on Friday and it was also funded in last year's budget. So we are making that very significant move forward.

In addition, of course, there is the work around our bus interchanges. The government is close to finalising arrangements with the owners of Woden Plaza for the development of a new airport-style waiting lounge at the Woden bus interchange. We have announced funding for the design needed to demolish the old bus interchange and construct a new bus interchange as part of the Woden Plaza. Similar work is occurring at Belconnen.

So in all these measure you can see that the government has put in place a comprehensive strategy and backed it with the investment needed to get it going. This is a 25-year strategy but the savings to our community are considerable, with over $400 million to be saved over 25 years through the implementation of this plan in terms of deferred road construction or cancelled road construction, health costs and environmental costs. That is the strategy the government has put forward: a comprehensive strategy, a funded strategy and one which all members should pay close heed to as we move forward in this very important debate about transport provision in Canberra.

Aged care accommodation

MRS CROSS: My question is to the Chief Minister and is in relation to question No 1475, asked by Mr Cornwall, about a report due at the end of February on the future of aged care accommodation in the ACT. At the Council on the Aging national general meeting on 16 February, the case manager for older persons at COTA advised those in attendance that the aforementioned report into the future of aged care accommodation in the ACT would be available by the end of February.

Mr Cornwell subsequently inquired as to whether this report could be delivered to members of the Assembly, to which you replied: "The case manager is reporting to me regularly and continuing to maintain very strong communications with COTA and service providers. I am advised that there was no commitment made at the February meeting to a different form of report."


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