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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 01 Hansard (Thursday, 4 May 1995) . . Page.. 238 ..


MRS CARNELL: As I have said before, the clean-up and clearance of Kingston and the amount that it is going to cost will depend totally on the specific use that the site is put to. When we have in place an approved plan, that will be subject to community consultation and a local, national and international design, and when we have decided what we as a community want to do with the site, we can then determine what it is going to cost to clear and clean up. Until you know what you are going to use the site for, you simply cannot know.

I turn now to the restoration of the powerhouse. As we know, the powerhouse is a very important part of Canberra's history. I am absolutely amazed that the Labor Party would query the cost of restoring it, allowing the people of Canberra access to what is part of our heritage, and using it for whatever is decided. We in the Liberal Party have spoken of things like regional art galleries, artists in residence, cultural purposes, and so on. From our perspective, the cost of restoring it so that it can be used by the people has to be worth every cent of it. Right now, as you would know, people cannot access that building at all. They cannot even walk inside it.

What it costs to restore will depend on what we use it for. If we restore it and just have it as a museum so that people can walk through and see what a powerhouse used to look like, although a lot of the bits have been pulled out, it will cost lots less than if we use it as a gallery, or if we use it for arts or for artists in residence, or if we use it for one of the other purposes that similar old powerhouses have been used for around Australia. There is absolutely no way of putting a price on restoring something if you do not know what you are going to use it for.

Mr Wood: I had a figure, as Minister, at one stage.

MRS CARNELL: What were you going to use it for, Mr Wood? Were you going to use it as a commercial building, like a high-rise development, or possibly for residential purposes? As part of the international, national and local planning competition, we will be after innovative, exciting, possibly visionary approaches to what we could use that site for. Once we know what we are going to use it for we can determine what it will cost to restore it. Interestingly, as part of a joint venture, that cost will not be borne solely by the ACT Government.

I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.

PERSONAL EXPLANATION

MS FOLLETT (Leader of the Opposition): Mr Speaker, I ask for leave to make a statement under standing order 46.

MR SPEAKER: Is leave granted?

MS FOLLETT: No; it is up to you, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Proceed.


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