Page 4021 - Week 13 - Tuesday, 17 November 2015

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This Labor government has been listening to the concerns of those traders, of those retailers, of those small business operators and today we have responded. We have responded with a decision that will see over 1,000 ACT public servants underpinning and helping growth and activity in the Woden town centre. This is a really important decision.

It also allows us to see the collocation of a range of ACT Health Directorate functions that are currently spread across multiple sites. We have five leased premises, including three on Moore Street, the former north Curtin primary school and some staff located at the Callam offices. So these non-clinical functions are to be re-directed and be collocated in new, modern accommodation at Woden. We will be proceeding as a matter of urgency to seek requests from the market for suitable accommodation.

This will allow us to provide more modern and contemporary office accommodation. It will bring the ACT Health Directorate headquarters functions closer to the front-line operations of the Canberra Hospital. It will free up older premises for redevelopment, such as the old north Curtin primary school site, the old ESA headquarters site. And it will mean that we will be supporting jobs, growth and investment in the Woden town centre at a time when it desperately needs it.

I think the Chief Minister is to be commended for leading the engagement with the Woden retailers and Woden small businesses. It was great to talk to them a couple of months ago. Today we have responded very clearly and unequivocally in supporting jobs, in supporting growth and development in the Woden town centre and hopefully giving confidence too to the owners of the Woden shopping centre, Westfield, so that they can bring forward investment as well in Woden, help with the revitalisation of Woden and grow it as one of our very important town centres.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Ms Porter.

MS PORTER: Minister, what are the expected benefits for ACT Health?

MR CORBELL: I thank Ms Porter for the supplementary. Collocation will, of course, improve coordination and communication between the different parts of ACT Health. It will provide modern office facilities, and that is important as well. But, importantly, it will see our corporate and administrative functions closer to the key service delivery point for ACT Health, which is, of course, the Canberra Hospital.

We already have multiple journeys and multiple staff moving between the campus of the Canberra Hospital and ACT Health’s headquarters, which is currently in Moore Street here in Canberra city. Obviously, having that function physically closer to the Canberra Hospital means that it will be more convenient, with better access for staff of ACT Health to work with our front-line service delivery at the Canberra Hospital. It will also mean that a number of staff who are performing administrative and corporate functions at the Canberra Hospital will be able to locate off site away from the campus—they do not need to be on campus to be delivering those functions—but they will still be close to the campus because they will be at the new Woden site.

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