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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 10 Hansard (14 October) . . Page.. 3130 ..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

used upper limit for low-density development. It is significantly lower than the B11 or B12 areas, which have maximum plot ratios of 0.8 and 0.65, respectively, but is higher than the densities of some of the surrounding areas of Garran and Hughes.

Mr Speaker, there is no planning principle which excludes this type of multi-unit housing from this location. Indeed, housing on the Federal Golf Club site would help achieve principle 2.7 of the Territory Plan, which states:

Growth will be accommodated through the development of the new town of Gungahlin; some expansion of existing towns; redevelopment in selected locations at higher densities; and the use of suitable vacant or under-developed sites.

Mr Speaker, housing on this site does not - I repeat, does not - threaten the integrity of the open space system. The site is part of the club's lease and it is covered by the restricted access recreation land use policy. It is not part of the open space system, although there has been limited informal use of underdeveloped parts of the lease by the general public. The site proposed for housing is not currently used for golf and there is no evidence that it has been used on an ongoing basis by the local community for passive and active recreation pursuits. Therefore, there is a net overall gain in the area available for public recreation. (Further extension of time granted)

PALM, in assessing the proposal, has acknowledged that the proposal would occupy an area which could be interpreted as contributing to the intertown open space. This, however, needs to be considered in the context of the following: The Federal Golf Club is included in the urban area in the Territory Plan and the National Capital Plan. The housing would not occupy land identified as hills, ridges and buffers or the national capital open space in the National Capital Plan.

The golf course itself was developed on degraded grazing land and there is a substantially modified environment compared to the surrounding nature reserve. The specific area proposed for residential development is of low ecological value, given the disturbance that it was previously used by the golf course, and existing residential development in Garran and Hughes directly adjoins the golf course, the urban open space system and other parts of the nature park. The proposed development would not prevent access to the nature reserve from adjacent residential areas.

Many of the residents indicated that they walk along Red Hill Lane, which is a private road providing access to the golf club. As the road is narrow and there are safety issues associated with this, the club has indicated that a formed pedestrian pathway and cycleway would be provided - again, a net gain to the community, a benefit to the community.

I will now reiterate much of what needs to be said to make sure that it is quite clear with everybody that what we are doing is not extraordinary in this sense. What we are seeing is a proposal for the use of 5.5 per cent of the lease for housing, in comparison to those approved by Labor under Mr Wood or initiated by Labor under Mr Wood. For Capital it was 14.3 per cent, for Belconnen it was 19.3 per cent and for Yowani, which was

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