Page 1976 - Week 06 - Thursday, 9 June 2022
and medium construction businesses, who will then have some confidence about the pipeline of work that will be there.
We have heard non-stop from virtually every single Labor member in this chamber about how good things are going to be since the change of government at the federal level. Well, here is something that will be of huge benefit to so many Canberrans trying to get into the housing market or find an affordable place to rent. Earlier this year the Liberal-Nationals government committed to releasing land at the CSIRO Ginninderra site to the market. So I urge the members in the Labor and Greens parties: now is your chance. Now is your chance to take action for the people of Canberra and make sure that we get this land on the market.
I am calling on the leaders of all parties in this place to write to our federal counterparts to get this land on the market as soon as possible. I am also calling on the Labor-Greens government to commit to zoning the site for low and medium-density housing because we know that that is what Canberrans want and we know that there is a clear demand in that area. I commend my motion to the Assembly.
MS BERRY (Ginninderra—Deputy Chief Minister, Minister for Early Childhood Development, Minister for Education and Youth Affairs, Minister for Housing and Suburban Development, Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Minister for Sport and Recreation and Minister for Women) (3.56): The government supports the intent of the motion from Ms Lee, calling on the ACT government to work with the commonwealth government to deliver more land for Canberrans. That is something that we not only agree with but it is one of those motions where the opposition have asked us to do what we have already been doing. It is something that we have been doing for some time and we will keep doing that. There are a few facts that need correcting in this motion, and I will be moving an amendment later on to reflect these, but I would like to speak, first, of the work that has already been happening in this space.
The ACT government’s history with the CSIRO site goes back eight years. All of those years were under the leadership of the federal coalition government, with quite a few different prime ministers and frontbenchers along the way. All along, this government has welcomed more land but has been public about the importance of thorough consultation with our community on that land. There is a lot of detailed planning and infrastructure work that is required to bring a new suburb online. It is important that any new developments in Canberra offer the things that people here want to see—good transport options, great schools, places to work, places to have fun and access to essential services. Canberrans want that delivered in a way that preserves our green spaces. They also want to make sure that our neighbourhoods are places for everyone, with affordable and public housing and with a mix of housing choices for everyone, ensuring that our neighbourhoods are diverse and vibrant communities. That has been the government’s approach to the CSIRO site all along.
When a sale was considered years ago, we thought about how to ensure the best outcomes for Canberrans, not just about the number of blocks. Well before outgoing Senator Seselja had an epiphany and campaigned on releasing the site to anyone but the ACT government, the ACT government was already well engaged with the