Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 02 Hansard (Wednesday, 16 February 2005 2005) . . Page.. 493 ..
back where they were. Somehow, between the previous Liberal government and the federal government, they were parlayed out of the site they had. It appears to me—I drove past it yesterday morning—perfectly adequate to continue as a dragway. If you blokes have any influence on the hill: perhaps Mr Mulcahy, who likes to hobnob with federal ministers, might pop up and put in a word.
MR STEFANIAK: I have a supplementary question. Minister, will the government definitely build a dragway at Majura or are you looking at other options, such as Williamsdale? I note your answer, but I saw in the press something about 307 hectares, or something like that, of land at Williamsdale for some other motor sport facility that no-one seemed to know about. My question, basically, is: will you definitely build it at Majura or is the government looking at other options, such as Williamsdale?
MR QUINLAN: I cannot bring you up to date exactly on Williamsdale, but an area of Williamsdale is also being kicked around as a general aviation airport as well because of the pressure that is being applied to general aviation at Canberra airport. A lot of the general aviation has been just elbowed out and people who ran businesses out of the Canberra airport previously are now standing at Cooma and other places, even as far as Cowra, in terms of flying schools and those sorts of things that have been squeezed out.
I think that it is fair to say that the Williamsdale site is inhibited largely by the development at Royalla. It is a development outside our control—it is a New South Wales development—of 100 houses or so, but I am not sure exactly of the number. It is quite independent of the ACT. It is not dependent on our infrastructure, but established, and that tract of land is now placed within earshot of suburban development.
Of course, we are all aware that the one great problem with a dragway is the amount of noise, particularly when you get into the top fuellers and the more exotic motor cars that run on airline fuel, high-powered kerosene, or whatever. It is beyond my ken. Nevertheless, they do make a hell of a noise, apparently, and that is the major problem. So the footprint that a dragway requires is huge and, for any community, it is one thing to have a dragway and allow people to build as close to it as they like because the dragway was there first, but it is another thing to plonk one somewhere literally within earshot of residential development.
We have seen the sound maps out of Majura. A lot of work has been done. Unfortunately, once we want to do this thing, and we want to do this thing closer to Canberra because we cannot have it where it originally was, we do impose a sound profile of quite large proportions, in terms of the 45-decibel line and the 30-decibel line, and more sophisticated sound measuring techniques or standards have been adopted and we are now looking at inversion layers. In fact, that just makes it that little bit harder.
But we are pretty damned sure that it can be done at Majura without really causing grief to the suburbs of Hackett, Watson and Campbell. We have seen from the sound maps for Eastern Creek and Kwinana in Western Australia how the actual measurement has been significantly, but not a huge amount, below the original estimates and the original sound maps; so we would be confident that the measurements or the projections that have been done for the Majura sites will be within the isobars or whatever the sound equivalent is of isobars that have been measured; if not, they would fall below that. But I have to say