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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 10 Hansard (6 December) . . Page.. 2688 ..

MR KAINE (continuing):

dissatisfaction; but that is the matter, essentially, that needs to be addressed, apart from the question of setting up a single planning authority so that there is no longer this conflict of interest. The other matter that must be addressed is this question of how people can be involved in the planning decisions that affect their lives. If Mr Humphries and his Federal counterpart, through whatever means they use to design and establish a new planning authority, can solve that issue, I think that much of the heat in the planning problem in the ACT will disappear overnight.

With the apparent support of all parties in the Assembly, I commend the motion to the Minister and I urge him to move as quickly as possible, recognising the problems Mr Wood pointed out. It is not going to be an easy thing to achieve, but I would urge the Minister to move with all dispatch to achieve as quickly as possible the objectives that are set out in this motion, supported by the Assembly in its totality, in the interests of the ACT community.

Question resolved in the affirmative.


Debate resumed from 20 September 1995.

MR WOOD (10.45): Mr Speaker, the Opposition agrees with this motion. Indeed, it expresses most of the actions we took when we were in government. Let me spell out the major components of those actions. First, we engaged in a most serious, determined study of the light rail options. We recognised that in today's environment light rail was really the answer to travel connections with Gungahlin and also, of course, generally around Canberra. The Government committed a large amount of money and a lot of effort to those studies, and I hope that in this debate or in a subsequent debate the present Minister for Planning or the present Minister for Urban Services, who may also be involved, will give us an update on how that study is proceeding. I emphasise that we took that most seriously. It provides the best options for connections to Gungahlin in particular.

Secondly, the former Government quite early rejected absolutely the Monash Drive option, that is, the option to take traffic into the city along the foothills of Mount Majura and Mount Ainslie. We very early wiped that off. We confirmed that in our proposal for the North Watson development. Where the corridor for that six-lane freeway was previously shown, in our variations that corridor was to be replaced by an open space, by parkland, as a buffer between the new suburb and the old suburb. I would expect that on maps, the National Capital Planning Authority maps in particular, the freeway may be there until their maps are changed.

The third step the former Government took was to give a commitment that the Dedman east freeway would not proceed but that we would explore seriously the community option that was developed, not just by people in O'Connor and Lyneham but by people generally across North Canberra. Without accepting it, we agreed that that was a matter for further discussion, for further examination, and that that was a more fruitful

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