25 November 2020

Canberra’s newest suburb opens, gawkers welcome 

| Ian Bushnell
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 John Dietz, Ngunnawal elder Aunty Violet Sheridan and Yvette Berry

Suburban Land Agency CEO John Dietz, Ngunnawal elder Aunty Violet Sheridan and Minister for Housing and Suburban Development Yvette Berry at the official opening of Whitlam. Photo: SLA.

Canberrans and prospective residents can now drive through the first stage of the ACT’s newest suburb, Whitlam in the Molonglo Valley.

Named after Labor Prime Minister Gough Whitlam, the new environmentally sustainable suburb, being developed by the Suburban Land Agency, will be home to 2,100 families and will include a public primary school and shopping centre, and multiple parks.

Housing and Suburban Development Minister Yvette Berry opened the first stage yesterday (24 November), highlighting Whitlam’s natural beauty and urban design.

”The beautiful views to the valley, beautiful natural landscape including Deep Creek, Kama Nature Reserve and natural ridges, and its urban design to maximise passive solar and minimise energy consumption really showcase what Canberra’s newest suburb has to offer,” she said.

”Over 2,300 trees will be planted in stage one of the suburb – 2,000 of which have already been planted – with more to be planted as following stages of the suburb are developed.”

The ACT Government, through the Suburban Land Agency, is offering a $10,000 rebate for homebuyers to install 5 kilowatt solar PV systems, electric vehicle charge points in their carport or garage, energy monitoring system and highly efficient electric appliances.

”This initiative supports home buyers to live sustainably but importantly supports them to lower their living costs,” Ms Berry said.

The theme of Whitlam is ‘arts and culture’ and each street is named for people who contributed to Australian culture, including Hazel Hawke, first wife of Bob Hawke the 23rd Prime Minister of Australia, for her notable public service and social justice work.

Ms Berry said the suburb was already proving popular, with the first blocks in Whitlam going on sale in May this year, and all 80 sold within a week of release.

The second public release took place this month with a total of 250 blocks released and sold to future Whitlam residents, with the third release expected early 2021.

Ms Berry said that as the suburb grew, the SLA would continue its commitment to environmentally sustainable development, and offering a range of block sizes and housing choices.

Construction on the first 500 blocks will happen throughout 2021.

The planned $1.3 million Display Village at the intersection of Sculthorpe and McDonagh Crescent will include a sales office, two-building multi-generational living complex and a demonstration single residence housing the sales suite. A public events space is also planned.

Part of the approved Estate Development Plan, the Village will take in parts of Sections 8, 11 and 9 and includes 14 single dwelling demonstration homes from builders, a temporary car park and landscaped play area.

Whitlam is being released in four stages over four years to 2023, with the first residents expected to move in next year.

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How about another Hospital?

Another dog box suburb, with not enough room for trees and if you got drunk and staggered home to where you think you lived, you’d have a good chance of trying to unlock the wrong door due to all homes looking the same

Let’s hope the shops and community facilities come to fruition. Too many new areas aren’t having the developers promises delivered on.

And Parkes Way will magically deal with all the extra traffic

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