Page 1597 - Week 06 - Wednesday, 2 June 2021

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has presented a significant challenge to our economy, we are bouncing back strongly. We have the best employment figures in the country as well as a very strong balance sheet.

In my portfolio alone, our government is investing in public transport, upgrading our strategic transport corridors to improve vehicle, public transport and active travel access; building a new Canberra Institute of Technology campus; and upgrading local community infrastructure. The largest project that our government is delivering is light rail to Woden. I am very pleased that we expect, subject to works approval being given, work to begin on early works for stage 2A of light rail as early as August. It will help to create a frequent and reliable transport spine that better connects Canberrans with our major town centres and residential and employment hubs as well as some of our key recreational areas.

Together, all this investment is helping to sustain activity and get more Canberrans working to keep our economy strong. At the same time, we are delivering the essential infrastructure that Canberra will need in the years to come. Too many cities fail to plan ahead for growth, which leads to gridlock, reduced quality of life and haphazard solutions that do not work for our community. We are seizing the opportunity now to get on with building our city’s future. That is what Canberrans can see all around them in many projects going on across Canberra.

MS ORR: Minister, what are the latest delivery updates on the ACT government’s major transport and community infrastructure projects?

MR STEEL: Yesterday, the request for tender for the enabling works utility relocation package for light rail stage 2 to Woden was issued to the market. This package of works is part of early works in the city to support the delivery of light rail. The works will involve moving critical water and communication utility assets from their current position along the southern section of London Circuit to a new alignment by Edinburgh Avenue, Vernon Circle and Constitution Avenue. The works also include the establishment of site compounds used for site office establishment, storage, construction parking and utility installation. It is important work that will allow us to begin work raising London Circuit in the first half of next year.

The Woden town centre is also alive with construction activity at the moment. We are building a new protected cycleway along Corinna Street; work is already underway on intersection upgrades on the corner of Irving Street and Launceston Street; and soon further intersections along Launceston Street will be under construction, with new traffic lights.

In the next few months, we will be starting construction on the new public transport interchange on Callam Street, which will be built to accommodate light rail and integrate with the new Woden CIT. The CIT campus itself is undergoing preliminary design work ahead of construction, starting next year, with the campus welcoming students later on in 2024.

These are just a few of the big and important projects that are underway. As we approach construction on many of these projects throughout the year, I look forward

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