Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 5 Hansard (25 August) . . Page.. 1233 ..
MS TUCKER: My question is directed to the Minister for Urban Services and it relates to the Manuka car park development. Minister, you will be aware that one of the conditions for the original approval for this development was that the developer would provide 140 car parking spaces for shoppers while the building is being constructed. It came to my attention last week that this requirement has probably never been met and that the amount of car parking was recently reduced to about 80 spaces. However, the developer of the site, Barry Morris, has stated to the media that the original development approval had been superseded by another approval and that this latest approval does not contain the requirement for 140 car parking spaces. This new approval was certainly news to those members of the community who have taken a close interest in this development. Could you therefore please explain the basis of this new approval under the Land Act, and what changes have been made to the original approval?
MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, I thank Ms Tucker for her question. The issue of parking at Manuka has been the subject of a lot of interest since the development began. The original PA and the approval that Mr Humphries as the then Minister gave included the requirement that 140 car parking spaces would be provided. It also set out, I believe, a schedule of how that would be provided and at that time it depended upon various parts of the development site being available for use as parking. One of the parts of the application was that the two substations that provide power to all of Manuka would be able to be developed one at a time. It is now apparent that both substations will have to be built at the same time and this has necessitated the loss of some of the parking. PALM has been working very well with the developer on this and in conjunction with the traders. There was a meeting today with the traders to discuss options on the siting of parking and 140 places will be provided.
MS TUCKER: I have a supplementary question. I did not understand from your answer whether another agreement was being signed. If another agreement has been signed, could you please table it? If another agreement has been signed, does this mean generally that the community should know, in future, that any agreement between government and developers must be seen as able to be amended or basically as a work in progress?
MR SMYTH: The issue here is that under the original development it was intended that both substations would be developed one after the other. Apparently now, on advice from ACTEW, the developer has to develop the two substations together. In his initial PA some of the parking would have remained on the site. That is now not able to happen simply because they have to develop both areas at once. What we will do now is vary the original agreement so that there are still 140 parks, probably none of which initially will remain on the site.