Page 254 - Week 01 - Thursday, 9 December 2004

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know, through the success of Floriade and the rose gardens that the commonwealth has just renovated at the old House of Representatives, the extent to which Canberrans and Canberra are drawn to beautiful gardens and to trees.

It is interesting and worth reflecting on, Mr Speaker, a couple of issues around arboreta. There is a history of arboreta in the Australian Capital Territory. There are some very significant arboreta established by Weston and by Lindsay Pryor and established at the direction of Burley Griffin himself. We have some magnificent arboreta around the city area—the Lindsay Pryor arboretum, Westbourne Woods, the arboretum on Mount Pleasant and a number of arboreta throughout the rest of non-urban ACT.

We know it is a matter of significant pain that some of those early arboreta were destroyed in the fire. It is fitting that, out of the fire and out of the decisions we make in relation to that, we now establish an arboretum that I think will be the jewel of all of them—the new arboretum and the gardens which we hope will be part and parcel of that.

For the information of members—and I think they would be aware of this as well—in September the government launched a design ideas competition for the international arboretum and gardens. Entries for that design ideas competition closed on 29 November. Forty-five entries have been received from throughout the whole of Australia and, indeed, from overseas, with very good response in terms of interest received from the number of initial registrations made. In fact, a rate of 78 per cent has been achieved.

I think we will, from what I am told is a range of quite spectacular proposals and vision represented through the entries, be delivered a wealth of ideas and possibilities and will be able to create a garden and an arboretum with a real sense of vision. I think there is great cause for excitement from this particular program.

I have appointed a jury of seven very notable Australians to judge the entries that have been received in the design competition. The designs will be put on public display. The jury has been appointed. I am so pleased that they have agreed to be part of the jury. They are:

Mr Ronald Giurgola, the international architect who was responsible for the design of the new Parliament House;

Professor Catherine Bull, head of urban design and landscape at Melbourne University;

Mr David Churches, an internationally recognised architect and consultant to the Beijing Games;

Professor Peter Kanowski, head of forestry at the school of environment, resources and society at the ANU;

Mr Eric Koundouris, the director of the Koundouris Group and noted Canberra business person and philanthropist;

Ms Alex Sloan, host of ABC Radio’s Garden Show; and

Mr Sandy Hollway, formerly director of SOCOG and the Bushfire Recovery Taskforce.

Entries are currently being assessed. A short list will be prepared over the next couple of weeks and the successful designs will be displayed throughout Canberra, for the

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