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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 10 Hansard (14 October) . . Page.. 3124 ..

MR MOORE (continuing):

Certainly Canberra stands head and shoulders above all the cities I have visited nationally and internationally. There are many that are very beautiful and have other characteristics that are great, but none of them have the livability of Canberra. We made sure we had a plan. We knew where we were going and were reluctant to change that direction.

That has always been my position. I believe I have been consistent on this the whole way. I do not think anybody will be surprised that I will be supporting the motion put by Mr Corbell today and that I will be opposing this variation to the Territory Plan. I have seen pictures of the development. It looks beautiful. It is not about whether the development is a good development or a good design or whatever. It is about the principles of the leasehold system and the principles of the Territory Plan. It is about ensuring that the interest of the community as a whole is served before we look at sectional interests.

MR OSBORNE (11.33): Mr Speaker, I have spent a fair bit of time over the last few months, particularly the last couple of days, considering the opinions of the communities which surround this proposed development. I feel that their comments hold a lot of weight and ought to be treated seriously. Members will be aware of the amount of interest I have had in planning matters in previous years. It is a bit disturbing, really, that I have actually had to have some involvement in this planning issue; but I promise members that I will try to avoid them as much as possible in the future. I try to avoid planning disputes, if I can. Typically, the decision today requires balancing the self-interests of one side against another.

The concerns of those who oppose this development have settled into three main camps, in my opinion. They are, firstly, that the land was given to the club for the purpose of providing recreational facilities for its members and not for selling it at a profit. Therefore, objectors believe that if the land is no longer needed it should be returned to become part of the Red Hill Nature Reserve. Secondly, it seems likely that the proposal would significantly increase the volume of traffic throughout the surrounding area. There seem to be conflicting claims from both sides on the amount of extra traffic, but it seems clear that some of the feeder streets are already considered to be problem areas. There are also fears by local residents that over time it will be impossible to resist pressure to connect the development onto Brereton Street, thus increasing the flow of traffic through Garran and Hughes.

Thirdly, there are concerns over the environmental impact that the development would have on the Red Hill Nature Reserve. I have noted that many of the residents of Garran and Hughes have voiced strong opposition over a long period. According to evidence given to the Urban Services Committee, of the 24 criteria in the Territory Plan which are relevant, this development proposal meets only three - that is, three against 21. I believe that it was said before the committee that if that was the score against the Raiders they would lose - not that that score line happened very often when I was playing for them, Mr Speaker, but I do recall occasionally losing one or two games.

Mr Stefaniak: How about with St George?

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