The Oaks Estate Progress Association has had another big win, with the Canberra Liberals committing to address heritage, road safety, public housing and public transport concerns in the suburb after every independent and minor party candidate did the same last week.
It leaves Labor and the Greens as the only parties not committed to an election pledge for Oaks Estate.
Canberra Liberals Member for Molonglo and candidate for Kurrajong Steve Doszpot (pictured above) said his party would if elected provide support to the Oaks Estate community in terms of transport, roads, housing and heritage.
“Oaks Estate residents have been marginalised by the ACT Labor/Greens Government, yet continue to pay ever increasing rates for services that are never delivered,” Mr Doszpot said.
“The Canberra Liberals will examine the best solutions for reliable transport to Oaks Estate. We will find a way to link Oaks Estate to the ACTION Bus Network.”
He said the Liberals would also commit to a one-off investment in speed bumps and crossings in Oaks Estate from within existing road maintenance funding.
The party would prioritise maintenance and façade works for public housing in Oaks Estate from within the existing public housing budget and expedite heritage grading assessments for Oaks Estate to remove uncertainty.
“The Canberra Liberals have been listening,” Mr Doszpot said.
“All Canberrans, no matter where they live, deserve proper local services and we are committed to services for Oaks Estate.”
OEPA Vice President Hugh Griffin said the Liberals’ commitment brought the association a step closer to meeting its “90-year goal to be treated as part of Canberra, which includes being part of the Canberra transport network”.
“We have the lowest car ownership rate here, so this means a lot for struggling households,” Mr Griffin said.
“In recent years we have been calling for the public housing flats, which make up over 50% of households here, to be maintained to the same standard as everywhere else in Canberra.
“We hope the Chief Minister will also agree to improve the quality of the flats to align with the rest of Canberra.”
Mr Griffin said Mr Doszpot had long taken a genuine interest in Oaks Estate.
“In recent years, Steve has repeatedly raised serious issues of the government’s neglect of Oaks Estate in the ACT Legislative Assembly, and we again thank him for that. He has been out here to speak with us, walk the streets and has gained a personal knowledge of our struggles and needs. He has done a lot in the past to negotiate with government on our behalf to get us the services we deserve as ACT residents and ratepayers.”