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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 1 Hansard (19 February) . . Page.. 215 ..

MR CORBELL: I listened to you in silence, Mrs Dunne, and I would ask you to show me the same courtesy. Mr Speaker, the surveys, professionally conducted with a clear and appropriate scientific sample, show that what Gungahlin people really want above everything else when it comes to the town centre is for the government to get on with it, to build it, and to provide more shops, more services, more facilities and more jobs. I am amazed that members of this place should argue against such a proposition. The government will not be supporting this motion, nor will we abide by it if it is passed today.

MRS CROSS (8.00): I rise today to support the motion by Mrs Dunne calling on the Minister for Planning, Mr Corbell, to immediately recommence consultations with the Gungahlin community over the design and layout of the Gungahlin Town Centre, particularly pertaining to a pedestrian precinct and town square.

I start off by saying that today Mr Wood tabled a document which was, in fact, a petition but which could not be tabled as a proper petition because the wording was not appropriate, but the document had 1,131 signatures on it and the people who signed this document signed the following:

This petition of certain residents of the Australian Capital Territory draws to the attention of the Assembly that:

There is support for changing the design of the Gungahlin Town Centre (central retail area) from the existing "main street"model to a "pedestrian town square model".

Changes should include:

Stopping the traffic flow through the main street (Hibberson Street) in the vicinity of the town square;

Creating a pedestrian town square (about the size of Garema Place) located adjacent to the bank;

Modifying Hibberson Street to allow for the traffic to make a "U"turn either side of the town square.

Your petitioners therefore request the Assembly:

To take action to halt or defer any sale of land or any other actions that may prevent the town square option.

I did not conduct an IQ test of the people who signed this document.

Mrs Dunne: Why not? It wasn't scientific.

MRS CROSS: Had I known, I should have. But 1,131 people signed this petition in good faith because they had a concern. I am not going to criticise personally the GDA or the minister. I think that everyone in this place is well-intentioned and is trying to do the right thing. But I certainly will not say that, under a democratic process, the views of 1,131 people are insignificant because the way they were approached was not scientific. I think that is absolute hogwash.

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