Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 09 Hansard (Tuesday, 24 August 2010) . . Page.. 3784 ..
MR BARR: We have settled upon a policy requiring some parking spaces for private dwellings. Not everyone will utilise public transport and it is important that in the context of again finding an appropriate policy balance here we do not completely eliminate the provision of private parking regardless of its proximity to public transport. Again, this would appear to be a situation where an absolutist position from the Greens hits the reality—
MR SPEAKER: Just a moment, Mr Barr. Members of the opposition, I would ask that you refrain from the loud conversations you are having. You are creating a level of noise in the chamber that makes it difficult to hear the minister. Minister Barr.
MR BARR: Thank you, Mr Speaker. The point I was making was that, again, it would appear that the Greens are pushing an absolutist position that appears to be quite at odds with the values, aspirations and lifestyles of Canberra families.
MR SPEAKER: A supplementary, Ms Hunter?
MS HUNTER: Thank you. Minister, what is the approximate cost that is added to a dwelling because of the minimum parking requirements placed on developers?
MR BARR: That would depend, of course, on the nature of the car parking provided. Obviously, car parking that goes underground—and the number of levels underground—costs more. And it would, of course, depend on the plot ratios of the particular development. It would be difficult to get an average figure. It would depend on the planning zone. It would vary. In some contexts it is appropriate to have fewer car parks, because there might be located nearby other car parking options. But the suggestion that you would eliminate all private parking requirements from unit developments—
Ms Hunter: There is no suggestion—
MR BARR: That would appear to be the policy direction that the Greens are hinting at through this line of questioning. If that is their position, then put it on the record and we will have the debate.
MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Bresnan.
MS BRESNAN: Minister, have developers or builders raised concerns with you that the minimum car parking requirements restrict their ability to improve sustainability and affordability of developments?
MR BARR: I cannot say that is the most regular issue that is raised with me by developers. Generally speaking, they are more concerned about the Greens’ call for seven-star housing sustainability requirements and they have certainly made that very clear. I know because they have made a series of public statements and they have come to me and said, “We have concerns about what the Greens are proposing.”
We have just moved to a six-star environmental sustainability standard through the Building Code of Australia for new dwellings. That has just been put in place. We are