Page 1981 - Week 06 - Wednesday, 6 May 2009
Yes, it shows that we will have a substantial deficit to deal with even while we are finding savings. But the reality—and we understand the reality after being in government for eight years—is that government expenditure will grow. It will continue to grow. We are going to contain it, through our seven-year plan, to 4.5 per cent growth. That is going to be a hard job, but we are determined to do it and return our budget to surplus over the seven-year period.
MS LE COUTEUR: My question is to the Minister for Territory and Municipal Services and concerns the Bunda Street refurbishment project. Minister, as the consultation process has revealed many excellent options for making Bunda Street part of a more sustainable town centre by improving cyclist and pedestrian access, will you ensure that these are implemented as part of a refurbishment project?
MR STANHOPE: I thank Ms Le Couteur for the question. I am aware of the views proffered to the consultants in relation to the Bunda Street upgrade, most particularly by riding enthusiasts represented by Pedal Power. I have met with Pedal Power and they have discussed with me their particular view of the design changes or improvements that might be made or taken advantage of through the upgrade of Bunda Street. Indeed, I read with interest the last newsletter of Pedal Power and their representations in relation to this particular issue and am conscious of those representations.
I am also in receipt of the views of both the Department of Territory and Municipal Services and, I believe, ACTPLA in relation to some of the implications of the approach which Pedal Power would wish us to adopt in relation to Bunda Street, which would have, probably, quite significant impacts for the continuing use of Bunda Street as a motor vehicular access or road.
Whilst no decision has been made and the final design for Bunda Street has not been approved, there is a view within government—as I say, I have not yet come to a concluded position on this—that the particular design proposals advanced by Pedal Power are not consistent with some of the design parameters of both TAMS and, I believe it was, ACTPLA. I will probably need to check. But there were two and I can only imagine that the other was ACTPLA.
I am more than happy, Ms Le Couteur, to discuss the issue with you and to perhaps get to the heart of the conflicting views in relation to this issue. I have a view that it is important that Bunda Street be retained as a viable, active, vehicular entry into the city. I have a personal view, in the context of some of the issues we face in relation to the revitalisation and the bringing of life into the centre of the city, that one of the issues we face is the number and the extent of road closures that have been introduced into the centre and the area which we are now confronted with in terms of creating a mass of life and activity which allows us to achieve the sort of environment and the vibrancy that I think we all want for the centre of the city.
You may be aware, Ms Le Couteur, that the budget includes the provision of $200,000 to develop an overarching, coordinated and consistent master plan. I think