Page 2000 - Week 07 - Wednesday, 3 June 2015

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I can appreciate that a multi-sports-friendly scoreboard would be a good addition to the park. Again, I can assure members that the necessary infrastructure was provided for any future scoreboard. The work that is often quite expensive—the underground cabling and the like, and the conduits—has been put in place. But it is a question of what might have been left off the current project to achieve this instead. I ask for patience as we consider other competing priorities, and perhaps for a bit of acknowledgement of the foresight in ensuring that the conduit piping and the like is there so that additions can be made over time.

It is fair to acknowledge that facilities do get upgraded and additions get made over time, but the strategic thinking has been done on that. With respect to the more unsavoury elements of Mr Doszpot’s remarks, when he asked, “Does anybody have any strategic capability in the department that is planning these things?” he might reflect on that and perhaps acknowledge that it was a little over the top. People might have different views on how things are executed, but people do put a lot of thought into these things. Everybody is a Monday expert, but at the time the best was done within people’s knowledge. Certainly, there was considerable consultation and discussion with some of the sporting groups. It is all well and good to come in here and do the politics of it, but reflecting on public servants in that way is probably a little bit unnecessary.

Extra parking was included in the redevelopment. A mapping of the broader precinct was developed, detailing a range of parking options within the immediate facility. Approximately 1,500 car parks are within walking distance in Phillip and nearby Garran at the following locations: Phillip district playing fields; the car park off Yamba Drive opposite Canberra Hospital; the car park off Albermarle Place in Phillip, adjacent to Phillip district playing fields; the CIT Woden campus; and Garran neighbourhood oval.

I heard Mr Doszpot’s comments that some of those are really a bit far away. With respect to those exceptionally large sporting events where so many spaces are needed, they were obviously never going to fit inside the ground anyway. People coming to a significant event would have the expectation of parking a little bit further away. Certainly, many of those car parks would be within the same distance that I parked when I went to see the Raiders play on the weekend before last. So let us be real about community expectations about these things.

Mr Doszpot knows this well, as my staff provided him with a copy of the Woden recreation precinct parking plan not so long ago, and I am more than happy to provide it to any other members that would like it.

In closing, while I appreciate Mr Doszpot’s alertness to the problems and his ability to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, there is nothing going on at Woden that we are not already on top of or currently working to fix. I have discussed the surface issues directly with the CEO of Capital Football, and I know SRS are working with user groups to provide the best possible playing surface. I hope that this very public briefing has updated members on what is being done and I commend my amendment to the Assembly.

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