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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 10 Hansard (28 August) . . Page.. 3378 ..

Mr Moore: You just said "western", and I think you mean eastern.

MR KAINE: I think Mr Moore has sold out his electorate, and he ought to be reconsidering his position, Mr Speaker.

MR STEFANIAK (Minister for Education and Attorney-General) (4.08): Mr Speaker, I too have walked both routes. I do not think I have gone across the Kaleen paddocks in recent times, but I certainly have walked both routes. I have been in the car park, so it is the western route that you go through, and I have gone around the eastern route and, indeed, further east than that. I have walked virtually all over O'Connor Ridge in recent times, including doing some orienteering once, which was quite enjoyable.

Mr Stanhope: It won't be any more, mate.

MR STEFANIAK: I don't think that will affect it, Jon. Some members already have made points. Let's have a look at the western route first, Mr Speaker. The western route goes close to the suburb of Kaleen, far closer than the eastern route, and there is concern in relation to the grassland. There is, in fact, some extensive grassland up until Ginninderra Drive. The eastern route goes through some scattered trees until it reaches Ginninderra Drive. Then there is the question of how you get across Ginninderra Drive. Are there going to be traffic lights there, or are there going to have to be flyovers?

You then go through the car parks of the AIS, and that, I think, is a particularly important point. Going through those car parks takes the western route very close to the AIS. It cuts though car parks that are used to the north. It cuts through major car parks closer to Battye Street. I think there has been evidence given that some 2,000 car parks are affected. More importantly, that is terribly close to the AIS, and terribly close to the dormitory where children as young as nine and 10 live and reside. The AIS has a number of very young athletes, especially the gymnasts, who reside in those dormitories. The people residing in the dormitories are predominantly young people, and I think that is a very important point to make.

In terms of the AIS, Mr Speaker, I will make a couple of points. I have heard that opponents of the eastern route have suggested that a western alignment is consistent with the AIS' draft master plan. Well, that is disputed by the government. A western alignment would increase the noise impact on the AIS resident buildings as well as on any future residential developments within the Bruce precinct. It would have a much greater noise impact too, in Kaleen, as I have indicated.

As well as that, a western alignment would have an enormous effect on the availability of parking for cars and buses within a reasonable distance of the AIS and Bruce Stadium. You have to add, too, the cost of replacing existing surfaced car park spaces with spaces in surfaced or structured car parks, which has not been included in the comparative cost estimates. I am advised that the Minister for Urban Services has indicated that that is likely to be quite an expensive exercise, adding millions of dollars to the estimated cost of this alternative. I understand he has stated that the cost difference could increase by more than $10 million if structured car parks are required. But it's not just that.

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