Page 3385 - Week 09 - Thursday, 24 August 2017

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The government maintains the financial objective of fully funding the territory’s defined benefit superannuation liabilities by 2030. The annual budget appropriation to the SPA is used to extinguish the territory’s employer share of employee superannuation benefits.

Over the past 21 years, to 30 June 2017, the SPA investment portfolio has achieved a long-term investment return of the consumer price index plus 5.1 per cent per annum. The funding objective remains on target, and I commend this appropriation to the Assembly.

Proposed expenditure agreed to.

Transport Canberra and City Services Directorate—Part 1.19.

MS CHEYNE (Ginninderra) (4.37): Canberra’s smaller population, thoughtful town planning and our good roads and cycleways have all contributed to the relative ease of our daily commute. However, with Canberra growing by approximately 5,000 new residents each year, transport infrastructure must keep pace.

Canberra’s growth is no more apparent than in my electorate of Ginninderra, particularly in the booming Belconnen town centre. There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to how people travel around the town centre, so this budget improves all modes of transport. We will get a new bikeway, a new rapid bus route and upgrades to pedestrian facilities.

For cyclists, $4.7 million will build the Belco bikeway to close the gaps in the cycle routes around the town centre and surrounding suburbs. The Belco bikeway will help link Bruce, Aranda, Macquarie, Lawson, Page and Florey with the town centre, and will provide an easy route between key areas in the town centre, including the University of Canberra and then beyond to Bruce, with Radford College, CIT Bruce and the Bruce stadium.

The bikeway will make cycling safer and more accessible by separating the cycleway from traffic and pedestrians, as well as building new pavement, kerbing and line marking. The bikeway will build on the considerable work previously conducted to improve the cycle paths across Belconnen. It is great news not only for those who already cycle around the town centre, but also for those of us who would like to get into cycling, but maybe have not felt safe to do so with the existing infrastructure.

For public transport users, the new black rapid bus route will make it quicker and easier to travel between Belconnen and Gungahlin. Last year I heard from Sarah, who works in Belconnen and catches the bus daily from her home in Harrison. The new black rapid bus route will be great for people like Sarah, with buses running at least every 15 minutes on Monday to Friday between 7 am and 7 pm. Even better, for the first two months travel on the black rapid service will be free.

The existing rapid bus routes around Canberra are extremely popular, and it is exciting to see them extended further into Belconnen. Mr Acting Speaker, as you

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