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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 11 Hansard (25 September) . . Page.. 3238 ..

MR PRATT: Indeed-and they were commenting, Mr Stefaniak, about the quality of the grass and other aspects of Canberra Stadium. The government has admitted, in the Estimates Committee and in other forums, that when this trench is driven down the western side of the AIS and Canberra Stadium, 2,000 of the 5,000 car parking spaces that exist west of the AIS and west and east of Canberra Stadium will be lost. That is irrefutable. That is good evidence given by servants of the government; they have quite clearly stated that that will be the case.

The government has then said that we don't need those 2,000 car parking spaces-that the AIS and Canberra Stadium will be happily serviced by 3,000 car parking spaces and that 5,000 car parks are not needed. That really is whistling in the wind. That full capacity-those 5,000 car spaces-is required, and those of us who regularly park at Bruce CIT and walk the kilometre to Canberra Stadium know that those car parks are essential. For the Rugby World Cup 5,000 car spaces are definitely going to be required.

We have not seen any plans from the government for where it is going to build the car parks to compensate for this intrusive program of works. We know that there is no space left east of Canberra Stadium or north east of Canberra Stadium to build new car parks-certainly not without encroaching on environmental areas along the footslopes of O'Connor Ridge. So what is the government going to do? Is it going to spend an astronomical amount of money and build a multi-storey car park to compensate for the lack of space? Well, where is the money for that? We know that there is no money in the budget, in terms of ongoing estimates for 2003-04, for the building of extra car parks.

The other thing is that, in respect of Canberra Stadium, the adoption of a western alignment will introduce new traffic problems east of Canberra Stadium. If all cars-apart from those that can be parked at Bruce CIT, so the majority of cars-are going to have to be parked on the eastern side of Canberra Stadium, if the space can be found, then the access roads coming in from the north-east will be clogged. New traffic problems will be created. This is not what we need to see if we are going to present to the world a Canberra Stadium capable of taking on board an international event such as the Rugby World Cup.

The minister has said today that the report that we are looking for is going to be issued as a joint report, a joint effort. Well, why didn't he say that yesterday in question time, when the question about it was raised?

Mr Corbell: He did.

MR PRATT: Well, I understand that he didn't. In conclusion, the Gungahlin Drive western extension is a disaster with unacceptable detrimental implications for the ACT's primary sporting activities, its institutions, and its associated activities within the Bruce precinct. We need to see now the progress that has been made. We need now to understand what the implications are going to be so that remedial action can be taken.

I support Mrs Dunne's motion.


(4.26): I am not going to debate the whole question about whether we want to save the car park or the ridge. Obviously, we have already had that debate several times in this Assembly, and no doubt we will have it again. But today we are

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