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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 07 Hansard (Wednesday, 23 June 2021) . . Page.. 1988 ..


Question resolved in the affirmative.

Original question, as amended, resolved in the affirmative.

Adjournment

Motion (by Mr Gentleman) proposed:

That the Assembly do now adjourn.

Belconnen—55th birthday

MR CAIN (Ginninderra) (4.34): I rise to mark a very important occasion—Belconnen’s 55th birthday. Before looking at the more recent history of Belconnen, I acknowledge that the area has been home to both the Ngunnawal and Ngambri people for many thousands of years and there are to this day many sites of significance for them across Belconnen. In the era of European settlement, there were many large rural properties in the area—Pine Ridge, Strathnairn and Cranleigh among others. During the 1930s Belconnen naval transmitting station, commonly known as Bells, was constructed and made its first operational transmission on 22 December 1939. It was only recently decommissioned, in 2005.

By the 1950s construction of the infrastructure needed to establish the residential area of Belconnen was well underway, and by 1965 the basics were ready—telephone lines, electricity and roads. The district of Belconnen was gazetted in March 1966 and a commemoration stone was laid in Aranda on this day in 1966 by the then Minister for the Interior, Doug Anthony. By 1967 the first residents of Belconnen in Aranda and Macquarie were moving in.

The area has grown to 27 suburbs over the past 55 years, with the latest additions being Strathnairn and Macnamara. Belconnen suburbs are named for places of significance to Aboriginal peoples, large properties and Australia’s leaders in the fields of politics, science, law, arts and medicine, to name a few.

There are many highlights in Belconnen’s recent history and there is not time to list all of them, so I will focus on what I think are the most interesting ones. Belconnen’s first traffic lights were installed in 1973 at the intersection of Belconnen Way and Caswell Drive. Our first roundabout, that curiosity of Canberra’s roads, came 14 years later in 1987 at the intersection of John Cleland Crescent and Connah Street in Florey. Another of those Canberra curiosities, an artificial lake known as Lake Ginninderra, was built in 1974. The first sod was turned on the site for the Belconnen Mall in 1975. The home of elite athletes, the Australian Institute of Sport, was opened in 1981 and we got our university in 1990 when the Canberra College of Advanced Education became the University of Canberra. The celebrated owl statue graced Belconnen Way in 2011.

Over the years Belconnen has flourished and become a place that really has it all. It has beautiful parks and open spaces, cafes and restaurants, thriving local shopping


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