Page 1712 - Week 06 - Thursday, 3 June 2021

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Of course, a recommendation has been provided as part of the due diligence and planning work that we have undertaken on this project that does recommend the future upgrade of the road to a duplicated road, and that is something that we have taken into account. We have not ignored it, and we will continue to look at it in the future, but the main reason we undertook these upgrades was to facilitate access to the school. And that is exactly what the upgrades are doing, with the extension of Albatross Crescent. We will be providing active travel paths as well along Well Station Drive as part of the work as well as signalised intersections.

This is a substantial investment that the government is making here and of course we will continue to look at upgrades around the Gungahlin region. As I mentioned at the Gungahlin Community Council, the government is committed to undertaking and developing a mesoscopic model, which is an operational traffic model, over the next year which will help to inform future improvements to roads around Gungahlin and what the priorities are. They could include Well Station Drive but we are collecting the evidence to make sure that our decisions are based on the best possible information available.

MS CASTLEY: Minister, don’t you think it would cause less traffic impact for Gungahlin by doing it sooner rather than later, with fewer safety concerns for the students?

MR STEEL: No. In fact, it would cause more of a problem because we cannot duplicate the road in time for the school to be operational. So we need to facilitate this brand new school being opened in 2023, and that is what this project will do. If we need to come back into the future we have made sure that the way that the road upgrades are being designed is that they are future-proof for a future duplication, if it is needed. The intersection will be the correct width, and so if we do need to add an additional lane to the road on either side then we absolutely can do that without having undertaken redundant works in the first package.

MR MILLIGAN: Minister, what is the point of having an independent traffic report if you do not implement their recommendations?

MR STEEL: We may do it in the future. It has provided us with a great deal of information that we will use in that future planning. But as I have said, we are undertaking a mesoscopic model. That was Labor’s commitment that we brought to the election to help inform future upgrades to roads around Gungahlin—not just looking at Well Station Drive as one road within the broader traffic network in Gungahlin but all of the roads, Horse Park Drive, Mirrabei Drive, Nudurr Drive, Gungahlin Drive. Looking at all these roads and what we need to do to make sure that people can remain connected and move around appropriately as the region continues to grow as well as the connections into the town centre. That also includes active travel connections.

That work is happening over the next year and that will be yet another input into the decision-making that the government will be undertaking around how we improve our road network, our public transport network and our active travel connections around

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