The proposed Dragway for block 51 behind Mt Majura is causing consternation amongst Hackett and nearby residents, and excitement in the motor racing crowd. The dragway was an election promise by Labor, but they have been unable to find a suitable site. So in desperation they have settled on Majura Valley. This site, within 3km of houses, will apparently be the only dragway in the world to be within 3km of residential areas. It does seema bit unfortunate to set up such a major project for protests about noise and the hours it operates etc, even before it is built…Canberra residents in the neighbouring suburbs are very upset, and anyone who likes to walk/run/ride on Mt Majura can kiss the tranquility goodbye. There are also issues about heritage buldings + wildlife.
Last night a packed public meeting was held at the legislative assembly. Bizarrely the meeting was held in a small room, meaning many had to stand and further crowds hung around the doorway. Some motorsport fans stayed outside with their cars and beers. It was stifling inside, and that was before Simon Corbell started speaking.
Simon spoke, and sat on the fence as usual, stating that while we must listen to residents, we must also support the needs of the dragway fans. No clues there.
Bill Stefaniak then spoke and he stated that Hackett residents would only hear noise to the level of a car going past your window, for 12 minutes a year. He also stated that the noise would be easily drowned out by a magpie warbling. He presented no actual evidence for these theories.
Deb Foskey then spoke, and mentioned that fossil fuels are old fashioned, and that Majura Road is already hard to turn onto for local residents. She stated that she had not got elected by promising a dragway. She also went into costs of a dragway (which are not fully budgetted for by the government) , and associated costs for improving the roads giving access to it.
So what is the truth of the matter. Will Hackett residents hear a constant drone of engines all weekend every weekend, or not? And is there any way to test this before the dragway is decided upon? Can’t they go out to the site and make similar noise, and prove to local residents that this will not be a permanent end to the use of backyards in Hackett on weekends? Also – isn’t there a speedway at Queanbeyan? Do we really need another one in the ACT?