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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 07 Hansard (Wednesday, 3 June 2015) . . Page.. 1934 ..

I know there are vibrant small businesses in the Gungahlin region and they will benefit from these investments. But, most significantly, Gungahlin retailers are already benefiting from the opening of Winyu House in the town centre. The town centre is that much livelier and Gungahlin retailers will be the winners, along with ACT government staff who have world-class office accommodation.

Canberra is not just a public service town. Close to 15,000 Canberrans are employed in our tourism sector, which contributes $1.6 billion to our economy each year. The Barr Labor government is serious about making Canberra a tourist destination. The National Multicultural Festival, the Enlighten festival, the Lights! Canberra! Action! film festival and the Canberra Balloon Spectacular are just some of the attractions that are bringing people to Canberra. The government is investing more than $10.8 million over four years to further boost our tourism sector.

On transport, this government is taking the future of an integrated public transport system seriously. The government is making a capital contribution of $375 million for the capital metro light rail project. This contribution is fiscally responsible and funded by the sale of surplus ACT assets and the associated $60 million contribution from the commonwealth asset recycling initiative. Yes, it is true, the federal Liberal government has given us $60 million to invest in light rail. Fundamentally, this project will reduce commute times from Gungahlin to Civic and improve connectivity across our city.

A new audit by Infrastructure Australia says that congestion on Canberra roads is tipped to cost us $700 million by 2031. Combined with delays on Northbourne Avenue, which are projected to rise substantially over the next few years, it is clear we need a better, more integrated public transport network now. Capital metro will deliver this.

As well as light rail, this government is investing in our roads. I received more than 1,000 signatures from Gungahlin residents for the duplication of Gundaroo Drive. I am thrilled to see funding for the duplication of Gundaroo Drive underway in this budget and, importantly, to get the duplication of Horse Park Drive underway as well. These are major projects that I have been out talking with the Gungahlin community about very consistently for the four months I have been in the Assembly. I have been passing on the local community’s views to the minister for roads and the Treasurer, and I thank them for listening to the Gungahlin community. These are vital roadways for Gungahlin commuters and their duplication, which will get underway this year, will vastly improve transport in Gungahlin. They are staged, as major projects must be. I will continue to advocate for an integrated transport network—roads, buses, walking and cycling and light rail.

Canberra is one of the most livable cities in the world. It is a city where people can come to work, live, and raise families. This ACT budget recognises this and works to improve Canberra’s livability.

The ACT government will be working to combat homelessness and provide more public housing for Canberrans in need. Very importantly, this government takes

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