Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 03 Hansard (Tuesday, 30 March 2021) . . Page.. 553 ..
Madam Speaker, I note that I will be speaking on the petition regarding the teaching of French language at Belconnen High School at another time.
MS CLAY (Ginninderra) (10.13): I am pleased to see that there is a community voice and that a community petition has been brought forward. I thank Mrs Kikkert for that; it is good to see. This planning decision has caused a lot of angst in the community. It is a good example of Canberra’s planning laws and individual planning decisions that have been causing so much concern for so many people.
There is a widespread impression in Canberra that community consultation is tokenistic. That has been rammed home with Kippax. It has come forward to me from individuals in the community and from looking at previous work in the Assembly—for example, the agreement to engage with development application processes in the ACT.
The meaning really came home in a recent Belconnen Community Council meeting a couple of weeks ago. It was an extremely fiery meeting that had the highest level of emotion of any community consultation I have ever attended. A lot of people in the community are quite concerned that the development not go ahead. There are a lot of people who are concerned that they are not going to get the facilities they need. It is a really complicated issue.
Part of the problem is that this has been going on for a decade and there have been some very confusing and not particularly well-run consultations. There is a lot of fear and anxiety about this whole project. I want to make it clear that it is important to do proper consultation from the beginning, that we get views in, that we actually listen to what we are being told, and that we put together proposals and plans that provide the facilities our residents need, respecting the green space that our residents need and getting good outcomes rather than this long, drawn-out process.
I thank Mrs Kikkert for her petition. I will be very much engaged in what happens with Kippax from here on, in trying to get the best outcomes we can at this stage of the game.
MS BERRY (Ginninderra—Deputy Chief Minister, Minister for Early Childhood Development, Minister for Education and Youth Affairs, Minister for Housing and Suburban Development, Minister for the Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence, Minister for Sport and Recreation and Minister for Women) (10.15): I, too, want to speak on the petition brought forward by Mrs Kikkert on the development of Kippax shopping centre. I have been involved in conversations with both the owners of Kippax and the Kippax retailers, as well as members of the west Belconnen community. Members will know that I grew up in west Belconnen and I am now raising my family there. I have been a regular at Kippax shopping centre all of my life.
The conversation about the Kippax shopping centre and its upgrades—as well as the growth in west Belconnen, including the Ginninderry development—has been a very considered process. It has taken into account the view that our shopping centres and retail outfits need to grow—because our west Belconnen community is growing and changing every day, particularly Ginninderry—but it also needs to take into account