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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 01 Hansard (Wednesday, 14 February 2018) . . Page.. 129 ..

I commend the amendment to members.

MS LE COUTEUR (Murrumbidgee) (11.23): I will speak on the amendment and close the debate. I thank you all very much for your contributions to the debate. As a whole, I think that basically you are arguing for my motion, insofar as the conclusion from everybody is that to do urban renewal well requires considerable care. Many different aspects have to be looked at, and not just the planning rules, the cycleways or the height of buildings et cetera. A holistic look at all of the issues is required. That is what, as I understand it, the CRA was set up to do for the city area. That, hopefully, will work very well.

My contention basically is that the town centres deserve the same degree of care and attention, and, if you do not mind me using the word, love, as our city centre. That is the contention behind what I am saying. Most of you have actually somewhat argued in that way, although I do appreciate that my motion will not be passed. However, I think it is a little bit better than a “fluffy piece of nothing”, despite what Mr Parton may say.

It is great that we have had some more discussion on Woden. I am surprised that we did not have it yesterday, with the Territory Plan variation; nonetheless, it is good to keep talking about some of the positive things that can be done for Woden, Belconnen and Tuggeranong, all of which are going through a process of renewal and need more care, love and attention.

I felt the most interesting comment that was made in the whole debate was Mr Barr’s, when he said we had to be relentlessly positive. That could be a topic for a more fulsome debate at some time in the future, because that is a way of approaching life, but I do not know that it is actually the best one. The future, hopefully, will be good, but we need to have some serious deliberation, rather than being relentlessly positive, in terms of deciding what paths we may choose to move on for the future. Nonetheless, I found that to be a very interesting contribution.

I am pleased at least that the amendment will be passed. One of the positive things about it is paragraph (4), which states:

… develop a Master Plan implementation program, and aligning with the annual reporting timeline, publish yearly updates to the Assembly on progress with implementation of each Master Plan.”.

This deals with a lot of the problems with the urban renewal that is happening in our cities, in our town centres and in our group centres. The community is really involved, the master plan is done and then nothing happens. We know why nothing happens, and that is why I moved my motion. It is because the people in ACTPLA who are tasked with doing it go on and do something else. It has led to a hotchpotch; things may be implemented but they may not be. There is no-one actually driving it to see that they are. That was the purpose of the motion.

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