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ACT Greens say no to Gungahlin Sequel

May 12, 2011

ACT Greens say no to Gungahlin sequel

(Originally published 09/03/2010)

The ACT Greens have warned that the new Molonglo suburbs could end up an environmental and infrastructure failure, likening it to the problems faced by Gungahlin.

At a public forum hosted by the ACT Greens at the Legislative Assembly yesterday the Greens launched an eleven point proposal for the development of the new suburb.  The key issues in the ACT Greens’ proposal are that Molonglo should provide adequate and immediate business opportunities within the community, whilst maintaining sound environmental practices, citing Gungahlin as a suburb which has failed at both.

Professor Tony Capon, ANU Professor in Epidemiology and Population Health, was a guest speaker at the forum, and when asked about how important infrastructure would be in Molonglo, he voiced his concerns about the new suburb.

“The risk is that Molonglo may become another set of dormitory suburbs without a diverse range of jobs,’ Professor Capon said, ‘I think that the critical point is that any new development should aspire to provide adequate jobs…we don’t want another Gungahlin on our hands.”

The second key issue in the Greens’ proposal is to lower water usage in all households of Molonglo.  The proposal outlined several methods of reducing water consumption the Greens would like to implement.  It included a plan to install a minimum four star water rating for water fittings and appliances, the inclusion of smart meters to measure water consumption and patterns, and the use of bio filtration systems.

Ian Lawrence, an environmental engineer at theUniversityofCanberra, was the second guest speaker of the night and spoke of the potential of using bio filtration systems in Molonglo.

“The bio-filtration system, just like the one in Victoria Park, is an excellent way to filter water,’ Mr Lawrence said, ‘It is a fantastic opportunity to recapture the Molonglo river and it’s creeks and lower total water consumption.”

Bio filtration systems have been used successfully in cities around the world, includingSydney, in itsVictoriapark facility.

The Greens have announced more public forums on their proposal in the weeks to come.

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