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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 10 Hansard (28 August) . . Page.. 3400 ..

MR RUGENDYKE (continuing):

I note that the Aranda Residents Group proposes that Gungahlin Drive be constructed 200 metres to the east of Caswell Drive. I am certainly supportive of this suggestion. Of course, the eastern route would be more conducive to realising this option.

I return to the crux of the debate: the eastern or western alignment? I too traversed this area with the committee

Mr Kaine: There must have been a real bunch of traffic out there.

MR RUGENDYKE: I am not game to say I walked it, for fear of more derision from those who did not think it was necessary to walk it. I cannot recall what day that was, but I thought the spur to Barry Drive was inappropriate. As I mentioned last time, on 8 September, subsequent to that walk, I met with the Save the Ridge group. Of course no compromise came out of that meeting.

Part of the evaluation process that most members have undertaken was an assessment both routes. What struck me immediately about the eastern route, the one around Bruce Stadium, was that most of it was on the stadium side of the fence, skirting the edge of the ridge. Once you take out the spur, there is no impediment directly on O'Connor Ridge. The road would basically lie on Bruce Ridge. A section of Bruce Ridge is common to both options. I was certainly not convinced that the road would cause the extent of damage that some sections of this debate tried to make us believe. What struck me about the western alignment option was how problematic it would be putting the road through the heart of access to the sporting facilities and the CIT.

When you took all the factors into consideration, the ledger was squarely in favour of the eastern option. It is the commonsense approach.

I will spare members the details put forward in the submission process, but I have to mention one of the complaints raised by the opponents of the eastern route. During the inquiry process, it was claimed that the Bruce Precinct Association, which gave excellent submissions and supported the eastern route, was an unincorporated body. I have received information that in fact it is an incorporated body. The names are not those which appeared on the inquiry submission, but I would like to mention them all the same. To President Leigh Shelley, Treasurer Geoffrey Wasteneys, Secretary David Bagnall and committee members Philippa Rowland and Mark Peoples, I would like to acknowledge the work of the Bruce Precinct Association and their contribution to this debate. The association has been around for 15 or 20 years. You will recall that it made a submission to one study in about 1977.

Finally, I would like to echo the thoughts of the Ginninderra LAPAC, which said in a recent media release that it is time for a decision on Gungahlin Drive.

MRS BURKE (5.43): Mr Speaker, through you, as a matter of courtesy, I would like to acknowledge the presence of those seated in the gallery with us this afternoon. I hope those present accept my comments as a sincere acknowledgment of their effort. Some of these people have spent much time and energy on something they are obviously very passionate about. Indeed, many passionate views are being put forward on this debate today.

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