Page 2406 - Week 06 - Thursday, 23 June 2011

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Environment—sustainable transport

MS BRESNAN: My question is to the Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development and concerns sustainable transport in Canberra. Minister, the National Capital Development Commission described the 40-year old plan which first proposed Majura Parkway as follows: the plan was influenced by the application of land use transport planning techniques which were popular amongst the engineers and town planners in the 1960s; it reflected the clear acceptance of the private car as the principal mode of transport for all trips, particularly the journey to work.

Minister, is this the model for Canberra you still accept and does building the new Majura freeway help to entrench this model?

MR CORBELL: No and no.

MR SPEAKER: Ms Bresnan, a supplementary?

MS BRESNAN: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Minister, are you aware of any negative impacts to Canberra, Canberrans and Canberra families because of the high level of car dependency in the city?

MR CORBELL: Car dependency can have adverse impacts, particularly if there are rises in oil prices, and vulnerability to that will be experienced by families and households that have less ability to respond to price movements. So there is no doubt that vulnerabilities do exist, and that is why the government is focusing much of its efforts on improving public transport provision in the city.

The Chief Minister has made clear that public transport provision is a priority for this administration and that the government is looking at a range of projects and activities to enhance, strengthen and deliver better public transport for Canberrans, so that as the impacts of both carbon pricing and rises in oil prices flow through over the coming years, we have greater capacity as a city to respond to those issues and provide households with viable choices in terms of transport for the city. That is the government’s objective, and there are a range of projects and activities that the government is investing significant amounts of public money in to strengthen and improve those services.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Le Couteur, a supplementary question?

MS LE COUTEUR: Considering that the Majura freeway proposal does not include specific public transport provision such as bus lanes, are you planning for low public transport usage for employment destinations such as the airport and other eastern broadacre developments?

Mr Corbell: I am sorry. I did not hear the last part of the question. Could you repeat the last part of your question?

MS LE COUTEUR: Yes. Given that there is no public transport provision, are you planning for low public transport usage to employment destinations in the eastern broadacre area such as—

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