Page 3982 - Week 13 - Wednesday, 30 October 2013
the city centre grows and operates. The draft plan looks to build the city centre’s identity as a vibrant, people-focused place with a strong economic, social and cultural life that will help Canberra become an even better city to live in.
As our city grows to a population of 500,000, we have to plan for key infrastructure and the major recreation and cultural facilities that our population of that size would require. Once again, I encourage all Canberrans to engage with the draft city plan. As a process which affects everyone, the more it can reflect the sentiments and wishes of the community the better.
MS BURCH (Brindabella—Minister for Education and Training, Minister for Disability, Children and Young People, Minister for the Arts, Minister for Women, Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Minister for Racing and Gaming) (12.16): I thank Ms Berry for bringing this important motion to the Assembly. The city plan is a significant piece of work for our city and it will guide a number of major infrastructure policy decisions for this government over the next decade and beyond. I commend Mr Corbell and Mr Barr for the leadership and vision they have shown on this project and for city to the lake, and for the consultative way in which they have gone about these projects. As arts minister, I have a strong interest in a number of components of the city plan. I am pleased that artsACT and the Cultural Facilities Corporation, which manages the Canberra Theatre Centre and the Canberra Museum and Gallery, have been involved in the development of this draft city plan.
At the 2012 ACT election, ACT Labor committed to undertake a feasibility study of options for a new major theatre for the ACT if re-elected. The 2013 budget papers indicated that the Cultural Facilities Corporation will work with other agencies on initiatives to plan the future directions of the city centre and the future provision of cultural facilities in Civic within the framework of the city plan and through participation in the city to the lake project. I am pleased that this has occurred and that the Cultural Facilities Corporation’s input into the process is reflected in the draft city plan. In particular, the draft plan has identified a number of sites around City Hill as cultural precincts. This is an important consideration as we plan for options around timing and location and for decisions on a replacement for the existing Canberra theatre.
As arts minister, I would like to update the Assembly on other capital projects that artsACT is progressing in the Civic area and that will contribute to the transformation of Civic into a vibrant cultural hub. For the Ainslie Arts Centre, the 2013 budget committed $1.5 million for major modifications that will enhance the function of the heritage facility for use as a music hub. This delivers on our election commitment. At the Gorman House Arts Centre, we have committed, through the budget, $1 million for upgrades to this important historic building.
The work at Gorman House and at the Ainslie Arts Centre has taken into consideration the draft city plan, noting that both centres are outside the city centre as defined by the plan. It is also important to note that the city west arts precinct and the Street Theatre, and the ANU schools of music and art, are also incorporated in the area of the city plan and will continue to provide cultural and creative interchange across Civic. It has been noted by my colleagues that it will be essential for the city