Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 6 (3 May) . . Page.. 1691..
DR FOSKEY (continuing):
adding to the cause of traffic is a good idea, it suggests the introduction of programs to increase walking, bicycling and public transport. You will note that Deakin is one of those suburbs in which there is an increasingly aging population who might not take kindly to the suggestion that they get on their bike.
Of course the Greens do support programs to get people out of their cars. And we support an increase in residential density around shopping centres as long as it is in character with the existing landscapes and is the result of good consultation with residents. But we do not believe that the process for deciding the redevelopment of the Embassy Motel is a good one.
For a start, the whole thing was developer driven rather than following the normal and preferable process of declaring a site suitable for redevelopment and opening it to tender, with appropriate building controls. Indeed, the process indicates that better consultation methods and clear processes are urgently needed in the ACT.
The advice offered to the committee, ACTPLA and NCA from the Deakin Residents Association was well reasoned, useful and indicated a degree of flexibility about the outcome. It suggests productive relationships which can be developed with residents groups if they are brought into the process at an early stage and are regarded as important stakeholders with valuable insights instead of, as all too often happens in developer-driven projects where decisions are largely made before the public announcements are made, in some sense the adversary to be quelled, silenced and fobbed off.
The Planning and Environment Committee inquiry did take the residents' concerns into account. Furthermore, its report provides what is often lacking after consultation: feedback to the submitters, allowing them to feel that their concerns were, at least, heard if not acted upon.
Mr Speaker, I just want to conclude by saying that the kind of feedback offered by the committee's report should be a requirement of all consultations with residents in the ACT. Indeed, it was identified in Meredith Burgmann's report to the government a year or two ago about one of the major flaws with the existing consultation processes in the ACT.
Question resolved in the affirmative.
Planning and Environment-Standing Committee
MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella) (11.30): I present the following report:
Planning and Environment-Standing Committee-Report 5-Draft Variation to the Territory Plan No. 244-Duffy part Block 2 Section 56 Stromlo, together with a copy of the extracts of the relevant minutes of proceedings.
That the report be noted.