Comments by Greens MLA Shane Rattenbury on the Canberra Raiders’ proposed development in Braddon raise a number of issues including the role of community councils and how the ACT government manages development applications from clubs in future.
I normally do not comment on the development proposals of individual clubs but there are broader issues at stake because the Raiders’ development will not be the last time a club in the ACT seeks to redevelop land as a way of reducing reliance on poker machines.
Thank you Ed:
So are these results of the Survey which “clearly show” Residents’ attitude, being based upon this –
That is, that 95 “Residents” somehow constitutes a clear assertion of community attitude, and quite sufficient to justify the NCCC’s position ?
“The NCCC came to its position at publicly notified meetings during 2013.
“In order to check whether our position was consistent with the views of the broader community, we conducted a public survey that received more than 160 responses. The results show that North Canberra residents prefer that the site becomes urban open space or is used for recreational purposes, rather than being developed for commercial and residential purposes.”
Thank you NCCC for providing this link to the Canberra Times article by Jeff House of ClubsACT.
He states – “Despite one of its representatives telling ABC radio on January 13 that if the council didn’t have the support of the local community it would end its appeal, it has not been withdrawn.”
Was that true, and if so what is the NCCC’s current position, please ?
Ed: “The results of our survey clearly show that North Canberra residents prefer that the site becomes urban open space – for example as a park or community activity centre – or is used for recreational purposes.”
It is our understanding the land was originally gifted to the clubs by the NCDC, for the sporting/entertainment purposes of those clubs at the time. So we take the view the land remains community land, and do not support the notion the land can be sold for the personal benefit of whomever remains in charge in those clubs. Unless the club concerned can demonstrate it originally purchased the land in question, if the original purpose of the gifting no longer exists, the land should to be resumed from the present holder and re-allocated for another body for club purposes. Otherwise clubs may be purposefully allowed to deteriorate to hasten private sale of gifted community sites. The issue of poker machines is a distraction from a closer examination of who benefits from the sale of community land redevelopment purposes.
Jeff House (”Clash of ideological positions for Rattenbury”, Times2, February 26, p5) said he didn’t normally comment on the development proposals of individual clubs, but he did so anyway on the Raiders’ proposals for Northbourne Oval. It would have helped had he done his homework.
House queries the standing of the North Canberra Community Council to take part in the debate. Well, Mr House, guess who the Canberra Raiders approached to organise their original (and only) community consultations for them? Yes, it was the NCCC. I attended the meeting of about 30 people in Hackett (I am not an NCCC member), where widespread concern was expressed over the proposals. The Raiders, however, failed to pass these concerns on to the ACT Planning and Land Authority.
Mr House talks of the Raiders’ subsequent survey, in which 200 members expressed support. It was hardly a scientific survey and I am not surprised by the result. I am a Raiders club member and received their email, which stated: ”If you would like to help support the Raiders, and don’t have an objection to the old Braddon Club site being deconcessionalised, please email the NCCC at info@northcanberra .org.au and copy in something along the lines: ‘I am a North Canberra resident and I support ACTPLA’s decision to approve the deconcessionalisation of the old Braddon Club site, which will enable the Raiders to build a mixed-use development. Please record my support and include it with any representations the NCCC makes on behalf of North Canberra residents.”’
Mr House refers to the 2007 government request to the club to help alleviate parking shortages in Civic. It is my understanding that this was only meant to be a short-term measure while the Canberra Centre was being extended and the car parks on which the extension was being built were out of action. Since then, hundreds of car parks have been added.
I am a concerned Braddon resident who lives across the road from Northbourne Oval. I have written to the ACTPLA on several occasions voicing my objections. I am pleased that it seems Shane Rattenbury objects – at least to the commercial car park. I trust he will have the support of his colleagues.
Rob Palfreyman, Braddon