Page 264 - Week 01 - Thursday, 17 February 2011

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video

actually mean? I do not think we should be committing ourselves to whatever the current level of public housing happens to be.

Overall, this is really the cut and thrust of what the planning committee is all about in terms of making recommendations about the future of specific sites and about zones in general. Recommendations 1, 2 and 3 seem to be controversial, but we cannot shy away from making decisions in this place; that is what we are here to do. I think recommendations 1, 2 and 3, if they are implemented by the government, will result in necessary reforms to the territory plan.

With regard to recommendation 3, I do take objection to Ms Le Couteur’s comments when she said that recommendation 3 should be done last after the other recommendations are done. I think that is sort of having a bet both ways. I think Ms Le Couteur does understand that there really is not a process whereby that can actually happen. Once it is in the territory plan, there really is not that much scope for the minister, for ACTPLA or for us to actually determine which bit should get greater emphasis than other bits. So by Ms Le Couteur saying, “I support recommendation 3, but only on the condition that other recommendations are done,” I think is going a little bit too far and hedging one’s bet a little bit for political purposes.

For Ms Le Couteur to also then say, “And, if we don’t do it now, it is inevitable,” is again somewhat hedging one’s bets. Yes, I believe that the major transport corridors in the ACT, especially Northbourne Avenue, do have tremendous opportunity for redevelopment and can bring us much of the critical mass we require for the densification of our city. For instance, a development on Northbourne Avenue with 500 dwellings, with pretty much one development application, is far more efficient and is far less burdensome on infrastructure and for the community as a whole than 250 dual occupancies spread over Canberra, and you get a very similar result. That is a fact.

I believe that many developers in town understand that and I hope ACTPLA, the minister and other members of this place understand that. We have to make sure that we have a situation in place, an environment in place, whereby we can actually support these large-scale developments in appropriate locations. That is the most important thing: that they are in appropriate locations where they are not going to significantly change the character of the surrounding area and are not going to impinge on the liveability of the neighbours or surrounds. They may be high tests which a development must reach, but I believe there are places in Canberra where this can be achieved.

In conclusion, it is a long report and the inquiry did receive a good range of views—as Ms Le Couteur said, some very passionate, which is wonderful. I do not shy away from the decisions that we made in recommendations 1, 2 and 3. They are tough decisions but decisions I think this committee needed to make. I do not think we should be trying to hedge our bets about 1, 2 and 3. We need to make sure that we have the appropriate developments in the appropriate locations with all the appropriate processes gone through, but we still need to create a framework in place to create a situation whereby the city can grow but grow in the right locations.

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video