Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 10 Hansard (28 August) . . Page.. 2976 ..
MR SMYTH (continuing):
you pre-empt it by draft variation 200, you are condemning the debate to urban sprawl as the answer.
If we do that, then Canberra will not be sustainable into the future. That starts on Sunday, 1 September. That is why the draft variation should be withdrawn. That is why further consultation should take place. In Red Hill you have the haves and the have-nots across 1.4 kilometres. It is the same in Deakin, Campbell and many other suburbs. Kingston is reduced to three small sections where no development will be allowed. Is that right? Is that wrong?
We need to have a far more informed debate. Many groups are still getting their submissions together. This should not go forward as is, because 1 September will change the nature of the capital for all time. It may be the appropriate thing to do, but I do not believe we need to do it just yet. For that reason and for the others I have given, it is time for the government to withdraw draft variation 200 to allow further consultation and discussion on its implications.
MS TUCKER (4.20): On one level I agree with Mrs Dunne that it is very unclear how all the different strategies and plans being developed by the government will be integrated. There seem to be some deficiencies in communication across the various groups working on the different strategies. The public is equally confused.
In an ideal world it would be good to stop everything and work out the overall strategy for where the city is heading and then put together detailed implementation plans consistent with the strategy. Unfortunately, we cannot stop everything. We have to either continue with the status quo or put in place some interim measures.
In this context, you have to think about what would happen if DVP200 was withdrawn. It would mean that we would go back to the existing provisions in the Territory Plan. These are the policies that allowed free-for-all redevelopment in residential areas, which so worried residents and was an important factor in the change of government. The motion therefore seems to be an attempt by the Liberals to return the ACT to the planning policies that applied when they were in government. I would not support that.
It must be pointed out that this a draft variation. The point of putting out a draft is to draw out community opinion before finalising the variation. This process is already working, as I have already received a number of comments from constituents from both directions that DVP200 is too restrictive or that it allows too much redevelopment. This is a healthy and necessary debate, as the planning of our city is of great interest to residents and we do not want to get it wrong. To withdraw the variation now will leave this process in limbo, as well as providing more uncertainty to the public and developers about what redevelopment will be allowed in the future.
Mrs Dunne, as chair of the Planning and Environment Committee, which has the statutory function of reviewing draft variations, can give this variation a priority for inquiry and facilitate the further discussion and consultation she desires.
The key aspect of draft variations is that they have interim effect until the final variation is worked out. Mrs Dunne's motion asks the Assembly to assess whether the interim effect of DVP200 is acceptable. In relation to plan variations, I adopt the precautionary