Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 06 Hansard (Friday, 27 June 2008) . . Page.. 2226 ..
at this stage. I note that the opposition is having a briefing on this on Monday—that has been organised.
DR FOSKEY: My question is to the Minister for Planning and it relates to the relationship between integrated public transport, particularly light rail, and property values in new developments. I have been told that, if Gungahlin had had light rail, the government would have reaped an extra $8 million from the sale of just the first tranche of land in the suburb of Harrison. Does the minister agree that integrated public transport infrastructure has to be in place before the land is sold in order for the government to reap this transport related dividend from selling the land?
Mr Corbell: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker. This is really asking for an expression of opinion. It is not about any government program or service. I think it really is much more a subjective question that really is not appropriate for question time.
MR SPEAKER: Can you repeat the question, or rephrase it, Dr Foskey?
DR FOSKEY: Has the minister been informed that integrated public transport infrastructure has to be in place before the land is sold in order for the government to reap this transport related dividend from selling the land?
MR BARR: I thank Dr Foskey for the question. Have I been informed? I have been lobbied by some, including representatives from ACT light rail; I think that is the name of the association that Mr Reynolds, who is also from the Gungahlin Community Council, heads up. Mr Alan Kerlin from the Gungahlin Community Council has also taken the time in our regular meetings to advocate this particular case. But, in terms of there being a definitive answer to that question, I do not believe there is. It is a matter of some conjecture.
People can speculate one way or the other as to whether land values would be raised initially by such infrastructure. I suppose the question ultimately would be whether light rail would raise values any more than would any other form of public transport, be it a dedicated intertown public transport route such as the government has made provision for, for example, on Flemington Road that we are investing in in this budget. Whether it necessarily flows that it is one particular form of public transport that may well raise property values is a question that is really unresolvable at this time.
MR SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Dr Foskey.
DR FOSKEY: Thank you. My supplementary leads on from that. Given the lack of what the minister feels is hard information, has the minister commissioned or will he commission a study to determine to what extent the cost of building public transport infrastructure like light rail or a dedicated bus lane in Molonglo Valley would be recouped from increased land sale revenues which would be lost to the government if that infrastructure is not in place from the start?