Page 2833 - Week 07 - Thursday, 7 June 2012

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MR BARR: It has not been necessary.


MR SMYTH: Treasurer, as a result of these deals, how much revenue has the territory forgone?

MR BARR: No revenue has been forgone.

MR SMYTH: A supplementary, Mr Speaker.


MR SMYTH: Treasurer, why did you not ensure that proper transitional arrangements were in place so that the government does not have to make exceptions or deals to ensure commercial investment continues in the ACT?

MR BARR: I have made proper arrangements.

Transport—light rail and bus rapid transit

MS HUNTER: My question is to the Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development and concerns light rail and bus rapid transit. This year’s budget allocates $60 million to purchase new buses over the next four years and $200,000 to investigate building a new north side bus depot. However, in the government’s cost estimates for building bus rapid transit for Civic to Gungahlin, the estimated cost for vehicles and depots is zero dollars. Minister, how can you state that there is a like-for-like comparison between the costs of introducing light rail compared to bus rapid transit when you have excluded the capital costs for buses and depots?

MS GALLAGHER: I thank Ms Hunter for the question. As members would know, the update on the work that is being done on the Gungahlin to city transport corridor was released with some early cost estimates for bus rapid transit between $300 million and $360 million and light rail between $700 million and $860 million. My understanding in terms of infrastructure for light rail is that that includes the cost of purchasing the infrastructure and the stations and the new infrastructure that would have to be built. In relation to bus rapid transit, as I understand it—I will take some additional advice if this is not correct—some of the costs in relation to the buses were not included because we own a bus fleet already.

MR SPEAKER: Ms Hunter, a supplementary question.

MS HUNTER: Minister, given the questioning about the reliability of your light rail costings, including from groups such as the Australian railway association, will you ask the new Gungahlin-Civic transport project office to re-examine the costs of light rail?

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