Page 3008 - Week 10 - Wednesday, 14 August 2013

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At Kingston, as I have just said, the budget commits $300,000 to progress the planning of the visual arts precinct there, and I am pleased that work will progress and that Megalo is, indeed, one of the plank tenants down in Kingston.

In addition, I have instructed artsACT to commission some work around the Fitters Workshop to determine what needs to be done to make that building compliant with health and safety requirements so it can be used by community groups. I anticipate that work to be occurring over the next short while. Speaking with Megalo and Canberra Glassworks, I know they have expressed an interest in the use of fitters in supporting their future exhibitions.

Transport—light rail

MR COE: My question is to the Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development regarding light rail. Minister, in August 2012 the ACT government made a submission to Infrastructure Australia for light rail or bus rapid transit. A few months later the government decided to go ahead with light rail. Minister, what information became available between the time of the submission and the time that light rail was decided, and did that information support light rail over buses?

MR CORBELL: The IA submission was not a submission asking IA to choose between bus rapid transit and light rail. That is wrong. The submission to IA was a request for funding to further develop analysis of the two options, not to choose between one or the other. That is one of the misrepresentations that Mr Coe has persistently made in the public debate.

The government took the decision in the lead-up to the October election that we had to demonstrate and bite the bullet on what was the most appropriate transport mode for the city. There have been extensive and detailed investigations, dating all the way back to the mid-1990s, about the best options for the corridor. The government was privy to the analysis undertaken in the development of the business case which showed that, by the higher density land use value model, LRT was the preferred option.

The choices we have as a city are pretty stark and pretty clear. We can continue to develop as business as usual, with more and more people living far away from the city centre—

Mr Coe: A point of order, Madam Speaker, on relevance. The specific question was: what information became available between the time of the submission and the time where the government decided to construct light rail?

MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Corbell, can I ask you to be directly relevant to the question.

MR CORBELL: Madam Speaker, we did not commission any new or additional analysis during that time because there was over a decade of analysis already available. Instead we took the decision, Madam Speaker—

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