Australian Capital Territory

ACT Government launches next phase of consultation for Canberra's first age-friendly suburbs

ACT Territory and Municipal Services Minister Shane Rattenbury last week launched the next phase of community consultation to improve infrastructure in Weston and Ainslie as part of works to make them Canberra's first age friendly suburbs.

"The ACT Government has been working with Council on the Ageing (COTA) to make Weston and Ainslie Canberra's first age-friendly suburbs by improving infrastructure and facilities to make it easier for older residents to get around," Mr Rattenbury said.

Black Mountain, Canberra
Photo: Black Mountain, Canberra / by Prescott Pym.

"These suburbs were chosen to be the first in Canberra based on their demographic profile and differences in their urban environment, with Kaleen and Monash next on the list.

"We want to make it easier, more convenient and more accessible for older residents to move in and around their community and would like your help to determine what improvements are needed to create friendlier and more accessible suburbs," the Minister said.

An initial audit was undertaken in late 2014 and consultation was undertaken by COTA in early 2015. The key findings identified issues such as narrow and incomplete path segments, non-compliant wheelchair ramps, few places to rest and reduced visibility due to overhanging vegetation.

"We are now seeking feedback on the proposed improvements which include the widening of existing paths, re alignment of wheelchair ramps to reduce steepness and installation of additional seating. Residents of Weston and Ainslie and the wider community are invited to provide feedback on the preliminary recommendations and help prioritise the proposed improvements," Mr Ratttenbury said.

"Age-friendly active travel improvements in Ainslie and Weston are part of the $750,000 Age-friendly Suburbs project. The project will deliver active travel infrastructure and open space improvements to four pilot suburbs over a two year period.

"Age-friendly improvements to Ainslie and Weston will be constructed by June 2016. Improvements for the suburbs of Monash and Kaleen will be designed and constructed in the 2016-17 financial year," Mr Rattenbury concluded.

More information is available from the ACT Government's 'Time to Talk' website at <http://www.timetotalk.act.gov.au/>.

Photo: Black Mountain, Canberra / 'Tall Tower, Long Shadow' / Prescott Pym / Licensed under Creative Commons BY-NC 2.0.

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