Page 5176 - Week 12 - Thursday, 27 October 2011

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New Belconnen Police Station—Progress report in regard to construction, dated 27 October 2011.


Discussion of matter of public importance

MADAM ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Mrs Dunne): Mr Speaker has received letters from Dr Bourke, Ms Bresnan, Mr Hargreaves, Ms Hunter, Ms Le Couteur and Ms Porter proposing that matters of public importance be submitted to the Assembly. In accordance with standing order 79, Mr Speaker has determined that the matter proposed by Dr Bourke be submitted to the Assembly, namely:

The benefits of investing in public transport in the ACT.

DR BOURKE (Ginninderra) (3.02): I take this opportunity to inform the Assembly of public transport improvements that are being undertaken by the ACT government.

The 2009 strategic public transport network plan provided detail about the public transport corridors that will be the location for a future mass rapid transit system. The rapid corridors identified in the 2009 network plan link the five town centres and a parliamentary zone loop with a possible extension to the airport. The Red Rapid and Blue Rapid buses already provide frequent services on some of these future mass transit routes. This frequent network defined in the 2009 plan will be updated soon as part of the transport for Canberra policy—particularly to reflect changes in land use planning since 2009, when the report was completed, and the many comments from the community about where land use planning could best support frequent transport services.

Canberra’s structure of separate districts and town centres well connected by public transport corridors and associated land use development along these corridors was driven by the 2004 spatial plan and sustainable transport plan. It will be updated and strengthened in the upcoming planning strategy and transport for Canberra policy to create an environment in which mass rapid transit options can be more actively considered as we plan the city.

The 2031 frequent network has been designed for the current bus-based fleet, but will be adaptable to and supportive of future mass rapid transit technology like light rail, bus rapid transit, monorails or other technology. To help plan for mass transit, we will focus on defining the frequent network in policy and planning so that other city-building activities can respond to it.

All of our infrastructure planning studies and construction include, and will continue to include, assessments of alternative transit technology requirements. For example, the Northbourne Avenue corridor study from 2011-12 will see the ACT government work in partnership with the National Capital Authority and the Canberra community and business sector to create a vision for this national gateway to the territory, with mass transit to make the most of the development opportunities from existing land use settings.

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