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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 7 Hansard (29 June) . . Page.. 2888..


MR WOOD (continuing):

or after construction. While the resolution of some issues has been quite challenging the council, together with the tenants, has indicated that they support the processes undertaken so far.

The department will continue to address issues as they occur, in consultation with the council, the tenants and construction control-the ACT based construction managers. The department has undertaken to meet with the council and construction control on a weekly basis during the construction and fitout stages and manage issues as they arise. Should these ongoing discussions result in changes to the current plans, additional design costs would have to be worn by the department.

The government also recognises that the move to the new centre is an ideal time to ensure that the council is adequately prepared for their role in managing the new Griffin Centre. The department and the council have held joint business planning sessions to develop a business plan for the new centre. This process will continue as needed, and will include a review of the rent structures and facility management practices to ensure that the centre is financially viable and is a successful community building.

The department has also agreed to continue to meet with tenants, as required, to address issues of concern. For example, included in these matters at present are security and parking. The department is also monitoring the situation with Radio 2XX, a major tenant, which is currently experiencing some financial difficulties, although I believe it is working through them.

The architects, Cox Humphries Moss, have agreed to meet with each of the tenants to finalise fit out and it is expected that these meetings will begin shortly. The construction manager has offered to issue a regular newsletter to tenants, to keep them informed of progress. It has also been agreed to have regular open days during key periods to enable tenants in the wider community to view the plans, ask questions and observe construction.

The new Griffin Centre demonstrates this government's commitment to continue the process of providing the best possible facilities for the ACT community. The building has a gross floor area of over 4,000 square metres. It has more functional community office space and meeting and community rooms than the current centre, plus a modern fitout and provision for contemporary information technology systems. It will have a high-level security system. It will contain a cafe with a Lonsdale Street frontage. The cafe will enhance the status of the centre as a vibrant community facility, as well as contributing to its financial viability.

The old Griffin Centre has performed a significant role. It has helped shape the values and character of Canberra. I am pleased to advise the Assembly that the department is working with the board to record this journey through a multimedia presentation for display in the new building. The move to the new centre reflects Canberra maturing as a city. It also reflects the ideals embodied in the Canberra plan, connecting the threads of the past and the present to create a vision for the future-one that will strengthen the fabric of our community. The new centre is well on the way to meeting the aspirations and specific concerns raised in the Assembly motion in December.


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