Page 1097 - Week 04 - Tuesday, 8 April 2008
GDE it gave in the budget last year. Indeed, it opened a few months earlier than we said it would.
Mrs Dunne: Yes, but you promised to deliver it in 2006.
MR SPEAKER: Mrs Dunne, order!
MR HARGREAVES: The GDE provides a very direct connection from Gungahlin to the rest of Canberra and it was being well used by Canberrans even though it was incomplete. I understand that recent traffic surveys showed that in excess of 20,000 vehicles a day were using the road, even before it was completed. My department will continue monitoring the use of the road.
Although it was designed and built as a two-lane road, it can be duplicated sometime in the future. The government will need to review the timing of that duplication and will rely on traffic data and other factual material to determine when the duplication will happen. We will rely on factual material—not at all like Mr Smyth’s health budget in the last election. He got it wrong by $30 million. The shadow Treasurer was 30 million bucks out.
I would like the Assembly to know that the GDE project was delivered by local contractors who have come together in a consortium. I thank staff of Woden, Canberra and Guideline contractors for the work that they have done. By demonstrating they can deliver on major infrastructure projects, they can create further opportunities for local contractors to be involved in future major projects such as the Federal Highway extension—replacing Majura Road as the link to the Monaro Highway—and—
Mr Pratt: The contractors laugh about it.
Mrs Burke: I know.
MR HARGREAVES: They sound like those characters in the Creature Comforts program on Sunday night.
Ms Porter: Ha, ha, ha!
Mr Seselja: At least Mary thought it was funny, John. You got one laugh.
MR HARGREAVES: You ought to, because you are a joke. You are the television joke at the moment, and the YouTube joke. You want to see the ones that follow you.
MR SPEAKER: Order! Mr Hargreaves, come back to the subject matter.
MR HARGREAVES: The Federal Highway extension will have an importance beyond the territory. It obviously provides a direct link from Sydney through the territory to the Southern Alps and the far South Coast, and will be part of a national road system. There were many benefits from the GDE, including building the capacity and experience of the local construction industry.