On 11 November 2021 the Planning Minister, Mick Gentleman, provided the ACT Government’s response to two motions passed in the ACT Assembly, and the Petition to Stop the Sale of Land in the Gungahlin Town Centre. The responses are summarised in a Ministerial Statement given in the ACT Assembly, and detailed in a letter to the Clark of the Assembly related to the Petition and a Statement in Response to the motions.

There is a lot of material in this, but the GCC believes the key very positive points are:

  • The immediate response and commitment by the Suburban Land Agency (SLA) as detailed in their letter of 6 May to “offer the opportunity to work with the GCC on the place making of future land releases in the GTC [Gungahlin Town Centre]. This would include engagement on how the sale of these blocks are brought to the market, the provision of open space and interface with the linear park and future public realm.”
  • The proactive work the SLA is taking to begin the process of consultation, as outlined in their presentation at the GCC public meeting in November 2021.

The positive points were:

  • The Government will “prepare an employment prospectus on the benefits of Gungahlin and the Gungahlin Town Centre … provided to Commonwealth Finance Minister” (which has been done many times before, so not much confidence this will achieve a result)

Other factors raised in this response included:

  • The ACT Government with consider changes as part of the Indicative Land Release Program regarding floor space for commercial/community properties
  • The ongoing ACT Planning System Review and Reform project (unlikely to be impactful until 2023), specifically
    • The introduction of District strategies (still poorly defined)
  • There has been extensive community consultations (despite these consultations being either of low quality or ignored in the final recommendations)

The ACT Government have indicated they will respond to the recommendations of the Inquiry into DV364 in January 2022.

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