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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 14 Hansard (11 December) . . Page.. 4304..


MR HARGREAVES (continuing):

I stated my view that Canberra's Y-plan has been the foundation of our planning system since the 1960s and that this concept is embedded in the national and territory plans for the ACT and provides the essential basis for decision making on infrastructure, services and public and private investment in this town. I also expressed my concern that over the past few months there had been an implicit shift in public debate away from adherence to this basic principle.

There have been planning decisions that have allowed new commercial developments at the Canberra Airport and we have seen numerous federal government departments enter into an unsightly scramble to be the closest to Capital Hill. In making my concerns public, I have received numerous representations that the Assembly should respond urgently to these concerns. I do not believe that it is acceptable to sit back and say nothing while the fundamental basis of development in this city is unravelled by the National Capital Authority, with the explicit approval of the self-appointed governor of the ACT, Wilson Tuckey.

Mr Speaker, I think we would need a very good reason to move away from the Y-plan at this stage of Canberra's development. That is not to say that it cannot be adapted or modified. I note that Brian Binning entertained this prospect in his discussion paper for the Planning Institute of Australia, ACT division, entitled "Canberra and the Y Plan", when he stated:

The Y plan can adapt and build on its earlier successes. The natural settings of the Towns can be defined more critically. Urban water management can be further improved. The existing decentralised employment patterns can be retained.

My objective here today, Mr Speaker, is to ensure that the existing decentralised employment pattern is not only retained but enhanced. In my electorate of Brindabella, I want to see a second economic food chain to reduce dependence on the two major Commonwealth departments that occupy the bulk of the office space in the Tuggeranong Town Centre.

I have been seeking action on the lack of employment and commercial viability in my electorate for five years. The issues are clear enough, but require a joint policy effort at a territory and federal level. My calls fell on deaf ears with the previous ACT Liberal government and their lazy Independent supporters. They were far to busy looking after their mates in the city and in Manuka to worry about what was happening in Tuggeranong and Gungahlin. They paid a very high price for their disregard in Brindabella when the voters elected three members of the Stanhope Labor government, the first time that a party has won a majority of seats in an ACT electorate.

I said that it would take cooperation from the territory and federal governments to address these town centre development issues. I am not sure how to achieve that, given the attitudes displayed by the National Capital Authority and the Minister for Regional Services, Territories and Local Government, Wilson Tuckey. What we have seen from Mr Tuckey and the NCA so far this year is obstruction, duplicity and contempt. Whether it is the ongoing delaying tactics over the Gungahlin Drive extension or the fire sale of land in Tuggeranong, all we have seen is a fervent desire to undermine the policies of the ACT government.


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