Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2009 Week 3 Hansard (25 February) . . Page.. 1005..
MRS DUNNE (continuing):
The lease purpose clause over the block of land states that it can be used for one or more of the following purposes: club; commercial accommodation limited to hotel and/or motel; non-retail commercial limited to office; residential use limited to multi-unit housing; restaurant; shop, provided any shop selling food does not exceed a maximum gross floor area of 300 square metres; and veterinary hospital. The conditions on the sale also state that residential use is not permitted on the ground floor and that office space is not to exceed 2,000 square metres.
I note with interest that, in prohibiting residential space on the ground floor, the lease conditions specifically prevent retail space from being created on the upper floors. In a roundabout way, they are saying that if you build two storeys or more you have to put residential on the upper storeys. In passing, I wonder whether other potential problems might arise in the planning process.
The point is this: had the government sought advice from the local business owners rather than just planting a sign in the ground, we may not be where we are today. If the government had gone out before planting the sign on the ground and talked to the community, we may not be contemplating a motion that would require the government to forestall a sale of land.
I can understand that the government may put forward an argument that says that in these economic times we should be maximising the revenue of the territory and that the sale of land must go through. I hope that that is not what the government are going to say. We have done it the wrong way round. Instead of going to the community before deciding to sell the block, they decided to sell the block and then they hoped that the community would respond.
The community have responded. They have spoken to members of the Legislative Assembly. I understand that they have raised these matters with Ms Porter as well. They specifically came and asked for one thing, and one thing only: that the sale of the block be delayed until there is a proper planning study that they can be involved in. No-one at the site has said that there should be no development on this site. They just want to be involved in the future of their group centre.
This is a very simple motion. I am surprised that we have got such a large number of officials to come and listen to this, because I think it is a matter of common sense. It is a shame that we have to bring this to this place and move a motion requiring the government to do particular things. They should have thought of it beforehand. But the Stanhope government are not good at thinking about people beforehand: they only think about people when they are forced to.
I am sorry that I have to bring this motion today, but I am proud to represent the people who elected me to do the job that I am doing today. I am proud that Mr Coe will be supporting me in this, because that is the job that he was elected to do—first and foremost, to represent the people of Ginninderra. The people of Hawker are our constituents. We are here today to represent their views to the Legislative Assembly. I commend the motion to the house.
MR STANHOPE (Ginninderra—Chief Minister, Minister for Transport, Minister for Territory and Municipal Services, Minister for Business and Economic Development,