Page 901 - Week 03 - Thursday, 10 March 2005

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promotes healthier and more sustainable travel options such as walking, cycling, use of public transport, car-pooling, working from home and so on.

All in all, it is about reducing greenhouse emissions, it is about reducing our impact on the environment and on climate change and it is about creating more liveable communities focused on people not on the motor vehicle.

I would also like to talk about bike racks on buses. Linked to bus system improvements and the travel behaviour change project, this year’s budget has provided over $300,000 for a trial of bike racks on ACTION’s buses. The racks will provide for bicycles to be carried at the front of the bus, similar to those now in place in the Brisbane City Council area. It is planned that racks will be in service by June this year.

Finally, I would like to talk about parking strategy. As I said at the beginning of my statement, the reform of the transport system cannot ignore the fact that most people in Canberra currently use the car to get around and that, even in the long term, a great many in our community will continue to do so. This is why management of parking is a key component of the government’s sustainable transport plan. The availability and pricing of parking affects the decision to travel and to use cars and other modes of transport. Analysis of the supply and demand for car parking in the town centres shows that there is more than an adequate supply, although the supply is being progressively reduced as vacant development sites that have been used for public parking are now being developed.

There are growing pressures on car parking in Barton and Civic and in Woden and Belconnen town centres. With the revitalisation of Civic, and the further development of Woden and Belconnen, it is expected that the public surface car parking supply will continue to decrease. As a result, there is a need to identify long-term plans to provide for short-stay and long-stay parking for the town centres. Accordingly, this year the government funded the development of a parking strategy for the ACT. The strategy will be complete by June and will review and recommend improvements to ACT parking policies and guidelines for land use in commercial centres in line with sustainable transport and land use planning objectives. It will include a parking strategy for the commercial centres in the ACT, maximise the efficiency, usage and equity of existing car parking and include a business strategy model for the development and operation of structured car parks in town centres and commercial areas in the ACT. By structured car parks, I mean multistorey car parking.

Experiences elsewhere, and the modelling of Canberra’s future transport needs, show that Canberra and Canberrans will benefit from a transport system that has a greater role for walking, cycling and public transport and a more efficient use of the existing transport system. Such a system will reduce greenhouse gas emissions, air and noise pollution and accidents, provide more transport management options as the city grows, make Canberra a more dynamic, liveable and attractive city and encourage more physical activity, with resultant health benefits for individuals and for our community as a whole. It will help to manage congestion on our roads and it will reduce the need for additional vehicles, thereby reducing the transport cost to householders.

Today I have outlined how this government is making significant progress towards transport reform to achieve these important outcomes. I look forward to the ongoing

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