Page 3842 - Week 11 - Thursday, 24 November 2022

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in the city. These young people were able to use their resources to do other things they enjoyed, rather than get a car. The federal and local governments had made a series of investments in Vancouver that helped set up a long-term, integrated and connected transport network. Active travel was prominent. The city is clearly a better place as a result of the investment in active travel and public transport.

Our city is growing, as you have heard. We need to plan for current and future populations, for where they will live and how they will move about our city. We have seen a huge revitalisation in the Woden town centre, ahead of light rail stage 2. The government is investing significantly in this area and this investment is bringing more businesses to the area. There are new gyms and Pilates studios, excellent pubs, nice restaurants and cafes and pop-up local businesses appearing in the town centre.

We have also seen businesses grow and change in the Tuggeranong town centre. By taking buses off Anketell Street and making the public realm upgrades, the town centre has become a better public place and is preparing for the arrival of light rail. We are also seeing more people living in these town centres, which contributes to the vibrancy and business growth of the areas. It is exciting.

The Productivity Commission also tells us that this is good planning. A report released in September 2022 backs up what this government has been saying for years. We want people living close to transport corridors so that they can have good access to services, and to avoid urban sprawl. This also helps with affordability. Good public transport creates good living and good living supports good public transport. It is that simple, yet those opposite refuse to get on board.

You would think they would have learnt from the previous two elections that Canberrans do support light rail. It seems they would still rather buy Audis than discuss the benefits of good public transport networks. This trackless opposition are railing at nothing. All week the Leader of the Opposition has refused to say whether the Canberra Liberals would support light rail stage 2. There are two tracks to choose from and I know which one the government is on. I suspect the opposition are on the track to return to the past.

The Canberra Liberals have been in opposition for 21 years and they are still conducting their campaign from six years ago. They are all out of ideas. Light rail may go in two directions, but these Liberals are still steaming to nowhere. I commend Minister Steel’s amendment to the motion to the Assembly, and his excellent work as transport minister. I look forward to Ms Lee putting her position on light rail stage 2, along with the position of her party, on the public record.

MR BARR (Kurrajong—Chief Minister, Treasurer, Minister for Climate Action, Minister for Economic Development and Minister for Tourism) (5.01): I rise briefly to speak, largely in response to some of the commentary from the Leader of the Opposition. She pretty clearly highlighted, as a number of other speakers have identified, that 2016, 2020 and 2024 are going to follow a very similar path: new leader, same old Canberra Liberals. I think the community is very clear, and the debate this afternoon further crystallises, where the respective parties stand on public transport investment.

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