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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 4 Hansard (28 March) . . Page.. 1091 ..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

that put it in place in 1993 and ACTCode 2 will lead to there being about 10 per cent of open space in the suburbs.

You have to remember that Mr Corbell said we were going to fill in all the urban open space. He knows that that is just not true. He said that this government was not interested in enhancing the amenity of Canberrans, but forgets to tell people that we shifted the Gungahlin Town Centre, that plans are under way to put 100 hectares of yellow box/redgum woodlands back into the nature reserves, that we have now said that Jerrabomberra Valley will not go ahead as a development site, and that we have saved the Tuggeranong Homestead, which Labor said could be built upon.

Do members remember when he said that this government is a government that is about a land grab? If you check the record, you will find that Labor sold 11,000 blocks for development in four years, compared with the 3,000 blocks that we have sold from 1995 to the present. He said that we were allowing all the dual occupancies to go ahead and half a suburb a year or suburbs every year were disappearing. Labor approved 637 dual occupancies between 1992 and 1995, whereas from 1995 to today this government has only approved just over 420 dual occupancies. We have to start by taking everything that Mr Corbell says with a grain of salt because so much of what he has said has proven to be misinformation. Yet again tonight we have more misinformation and more of him not quite painting the right picture.

Let us talk about some of the misconceptions that are out there about ACTCode 2. It has been said that ACTCode 2 will lower residential development standards for the ACT to the national average. That is not true. ACTCode actually strengthens and customises the latest version of the Australian code to meet Canberra's unique requirements. One of the allegations is that there will be lower standards on setbacks. Front setbacks will remain unchanged and verge widths will increase, so the amount of space in the streetscape will be larger. There are to be some changes to side and rear setbacks. For example, for walls with windows, the minimum setback is being increased to 12 metres where the floor level is six metres or above the natural ground level. Previously, the minimum setback was typically nine metres, but as little as three metres for walls without windows.

Another misconception is that a blanket plot ratio of 0.35 will mean an increase in the size of multiunit developments Canberra-wide. ACTCode does introduce a mandatory 0.35 plot ratio for dual occupancy and multiunit developments. Currently, there are no formal controls on plot ratios outside the B11 and B12 areas, where the Lansdown guidelines provide a plot ratio of 0.35, but it has no statutory force. This will give them force. The new control provides certainty and greater protection for the community. It can only be increased to 0.5 with an approved section master plan, which would have to be negotiated with the community. I can go on; there are many more. What you have to do is to look at what it seeks to achieve in the whole. Mr Speaker, Canberra is a special place and the revised ACTCode seeks to protect the unique character of Canberra. The things that most of us value most about Canberra will be saved and reinforced by what is in ACTCode 2.

There is some concern about the term "interim effect". Having interim effect actually makes things harder, not easier, because it means the most onerous of the obligations under the existing situation and the proposed situation is the default position. That is what still has effect. If there is something stronger in ACTCode 2, it has affect. If the

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