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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2017 Week 04 Hansard (Thursday, 30 March 2017) . . Page.. 1358 ..

MR PETTERSSON: Can the minister update the Assembly on measures being taken to enhance Canberra’s active travel facilities?

MS FITZHARRIS: I thank Mr Pettersson for the supplementary question. The government has a long and proud record of investment in active travel facilities but we know we need to do more.

The active travel office was established in 2015 to provide a focal point for active travel policy and implementation, and we are continuing to invest in active travel facilities which will make Canberra the active travel capital of Australia. I would like to give a big shout out to the active travel office, particularly for their significant efforts during Canberra’s first ride and walk week last week.

To further enhance active travel facilities we are investing $30 million over four years for additional improvements to our walking and cycling infrastructure. Some of our recent projects to upgrade our city’s facilities include upgrades to the Sullivans Creek shared path which means, for those members who might have travelled either by bike or by walking along the path, that there is a fantastic new route along our inner northern suburbs; improvements in and around the Woden town centre, including much improved links from the town centre to the Canberra Hospital; better connections to the Woden bus interchange; improvements to the Northbourne Avenue verge; construction of Butters Bridge to serve new suburbs in Molonglo; the launch of cycle training facilities for children in Tuggeranong, and soon to follow in Belconnen; age friendly improvements in suburban areas including Ainslie, Weston, Kaleen and Monash; ensuring that 95 per cent of our buses are now fitted with bike racks; and installing additional bike racks in the city and town centres, with more to follow.

We will also work hard to make sure our road network is constantly upgraded to include on and off-road cycle paths. It is now common practice to include cycling facilities on our major arterial roads and ensure connections meet the needs of Canberra’s cyclists.

We all know the benefits of active travel. In fact, just this week, some researchers from the University of Canberra uncovered a link between neighbourhood walkability and reduced hospital admissions for chronic disease in the ACT. I look forward to exploring with the UC researchers more about this research. (Time expired.)

Public housing—relocations

MR HANSON: Minister, are there any alternative plans for the recently announced developments in Chapman, Mawson, Wright and Monash? Will you make them available for residents for discussion?

MS BERRY: Thank you for the question. There is housing as part of this renewal program that is being developed in new sites, in greenfields developments, on community facilities land within existing suburbs. We are also purchasing housing and dwellings off the market so long as they meet the requirements set by the housing renewal taskforce to ensure that they meet the needs of our tenants and that they are appropriate for the public housing renewal.

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