Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 03 Hansard (Thursday, 18 March 2010) . . Page.. 1114 ..
Mr Hargreaves: On the point of order, Mr Speaker, I appreciate the clarity from Mrs Dunne; she is ever helpful. The issue for me was that the original question went to the payments system within the contractual food chain. I want to know how the security of payments system affects that.
MR SPEAKER: The point of order is upheld; the question is out of order.
Roads—Ainslie and Hackett
MS LE COUTEUR: My question is to the Minister for Transport and it relates to problems of traffic congestion and safety in inner north suburbs such as Hackett and Ainslie. How is the government addressing the traffic problems in this area, particularly caused by motorists from the north “rat-running” through the suburbs to get to Civic?
MR STANHOPE: I thank Ms Le Couteur for the question. I think we are all becoming aware of some increasing pressure through northern parts of Canberra. It is very much an incident of the growth in Gungahlin. At one level it is a situation that has certainly been exacerbated since the start of work on stage 2 of Gungahlin Drive. Since the commencement of work on stage 2 of Gungahlin Drive, particularly at Glenloch Interchange—and I notice this myself as a resident of Belconnen—there have been very significant and marked changes in driver route selection since the commencement of those works. It has impacted on all routes into the city, whether they be down Bindubi, Caswell, Coulter or Belconnen Way.
Out of Belconnen, there has been a marked change in route selection and a number of cars are seeking to get to the city by other than their traditional routes, seeking to avoid, to the extent that they can, some of those traffic works. That is also the case for residents of Gungahlin that previously may have chosen an alternative route to north Canberra. Now they are choosing to seek a way into the city and south through Northbourne Avenue and, indeed, some through other roads through the north.
TAMS monitors road car usage and the numbers of cars on particular roads. There are some engineering solutions to some of the issues—in other words, traffic lights and different configurations in relation to stop and give way signs. TAMS is currently pursuing some of those options. There are major longer term issues for the government and the community in relation to, most particularly, Northbourne Avenue. I touched on these yesterday in relation to the thinking that the government has done as part of the transport in Canberra action plan which is under development, which will be released in the next couple of months. There is obviously a recognition that Northbourne Avenue and the configuration have to be changed. There have to be changes made.
The simple answer to the more recent change in driver behaviour, Ms Le Couteur, is simply the upgrade of Gungahlin Drive, which will be finished, unfortunately, not for a year or so. The government is asking residents to be patient with significant roadworks that are being pursued throughout the whole of the ACT where we have contracts to the tune of $175 million currently let on 14 separate projects. Each of