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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 11 Hansard (Tuesday, 9 November 2021) . . Page.. 3085 ..

significant and will cause disruption to normal use. TCCS SRF will engage with sporting user groups to minimise disruption and provide alternative facilities as required. The works will address the petitioners’ concerns about the quality of the playing surface and complement the recent investment in LED lighting at this location.

Thank you for raising this matter. I trust this information is of assistance.

Motion to take note of petitions

MADAM SPEAKER: Pursuant to standing order 98A, I propose the question:

That the petitions and response so lodged be noted.

Sport—Waramanga playing fields—petitions 26-21 and 43-21

DR PATERSON (Murrumbidgee) (10.03): I wish to speak to the purpose and content of my petition—lighting at the Waramanga playing fields. As a local member for Murrumbidgee, I am pleased to support this petition from local residents in Weston Creek and throughout the ACT who use and value the Waramanga district playing fields.

This petition calls on the ACT government to install an LED lighting system on the two remaining unlit irrigated fields at Waramanga, a key sporting ground in the suburb I call home. Between the online portal and hard copy petitions, 555 community members have signed the petitions, with signatories noting that the demand for the use of the Waramanga district playing fields by the Weston Molonglo Football Club at night far outweighs the capacity of the four fields currently lit with floodlights. The petitioners request that the Assembly install an LED lighting system on the two remaining fields.

The demand to engage in team sport is growing, particularly in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. As a community, we stayed indoors to keep everyone safe, but now it is time to get back out on the sporting fields and engage with some formal competition. The Weston Molonglo Football Club, which calls the Waramanga district playing fields home, currently caters for around 1,400 Canberrans who are eager to get back out on the field. Demand for lit playing fields spikes during the winter, when the evenings are darker and it gets dark earlier.

To keep the players safe and to provide a suitable environment, lighting is a necessity. Currently, the Weston Molonglo Football Club is struggling with the significant demand for the limited number of lit fields in the midweek period. With four fields currently lit, and demand continuing to increase, the potential to light another two fields provides a perfect opportunity to create the safe space required for people to practise and play.

I note and support the ACT government’s commitment to the Canberra community through the provision of high-quality sporting fields. Facilities such as these provide a wide range of positive mental and physical health and wellbeing outcomes for Canberrans. The Waramanga district playing fields serve, and always will, as a hub to

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