ACTING Chief Minister Katy Gallagher last Friday released the Canberra City Area Action Plan 2010 - 2016, which includes more than $26 million for upgrades to be carried out in Civic over the next two years and an additional $3.7 million allocated to design work for other major projects.
The final plan follows the release of a draft plan in February 2010 and is intended to "synthesise infrastructure and development issues for the Canberra City Area into a coordinated Action Plan that directs short, medium and long term projects."
The plan includes improvements to public areas, upgrades to the City Interchange toilets and enhancements to transport with the construction of a bus priority lane from Clunies Ross Street to the City Interchange and a new ANU/City West bus station. The cycleway on Northbourne Avenue will also be improved.
"With Canberra's Centenary in 2013, it is timely that we make these improvements to our public areas," Ms Gallagher said. She added that much of the infrastructure in the public domain is no longer functional and "not appropriate for the nation's capital."
The plan includes 11 targets:
- Double the number of people living in the City Area;
- Increase employment by 35%;
- Reduce car reliance whereby the majority of people get to work by a means other than car as driver;
- Provide non congestible bus lanes for at least 50% of inbound buses;
- Mandate active frontages along designated 'safe routes' to achieve a 50% increase in the number of street level building entrances;
- Provide 17,500 publicly accessible parking spaces that are available seven days a week;
- Provide a minimum 10% spare capacity in short stay parking areas distributed across the City area;
- Upgrade at least half the study area's public realm to higher standards of safety, serviceability and appearance consistent with the Canberra Central Design Manual;
- Complete road network improvements that achieve predicted traffic performance and resultant economic benefits;
- Construct two kilometres of new and upgraded shared use path to improve bicycle and pedestrian access; and
- Construct at least two public realm improvement projects that are directly linked to improving the economic performance and long term viability of Civic's heritage buildings.
More information on the plan, 'Canberra City Area Action Plan 2010-2016', is available from the ACT Department of Land and Property Services website at <http://www.laps.act.gov.au/>.