Page 945 - Week 03 - Thursday, 7 April 2022

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supply; and the environmental impact of development—a particular issue for a city-state that is surrounded by bushland and steward to a range of environmental values that are under increasing threat due to issues such as climate change and development pressure.

I welcome the conversation progressed in this motion by Ms Lee around the issue of housing choice. It is an important one to have, and one that has been underway for some time, through projects such as the Housing Choices work and Demonstration Housing. It is a key part of the discussion as we work through the planning review, which is looking at planning legislation, the Territory Plan and the development of new district plans.

It is through this important community conversation that we can influence the tools and the settings which will deliver more housing options that meet our needs and our preferences. It is clear that our needs, preferences and choices around housing are changing. Our lifestyles have significantly changed over the past few decades, and many of us no longer pine for the homes that were built in the 1950s and 1960s—small homes on large blocks.

As we move through our lives, our needs also change and evolve. It is important that we engage in conversations about the types of homes we want in our suburbs, the opportunities we have for well-designed homes that keep us safe, keep us well and enable us to live a good life. In having these conversations, it is key to think about the impacts that our choices now have on the lives of those who come after us. The homes that we build now will be here for decades, and we need to ensure that they are designed for current and future needs, for individual households and for the community as a whole.

Some of the significant challenges that we are facing in relation to climate change and the affordability issues that also face us mean that we need to reflect on our expectations around housing. I encourage members to read an excellent interview in the Canberra Times by the incoming president of the Australian Institute of Architects and local architect Shannon Battisson, who reflects on the fact that our homes, like those in the United States, are amongst the biggest in the world, and challenges us to think beyond homes being a checklist of things that we want and more of a home that provides us with the things that nurture us and keep us sheltered. She suggests that if more people focused on designing the kind of space that they would like to bring a baby home to, or retreat within to grieve, houses would likely be smaller and more considered.

As I have stated previously, we need housing choice. As outlined in the proposed amendment, the ACT government’s Housing Choices Collaboration Hub highlighted interest in a wider range of housing topologies and a range of different price points, with a focus on development that allows people to age in place. Demonstration housing projects are also test grounds for medium density, delivering that missing middle that people are asking for.

Rather than repeating simplistic solutions, I look forward to some more sophisticated discussion around housing affordability and preference in this chamber, particularly

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