Skip to content Skip to main navigation

Election

Canberra’s most creative
residential property specialists

Pesec calls for halt to ACT Government’s apartment plans for West Basin

Ian Bushnell 6 May 2019 34

An indicative illustration of what a developed West Basin would like. File photo.

Independent Senate Candidate for the ACT, Anthony Pesec, has bought in to the row over the proposed development of West Basin on Lake Burley Griffin, saying he will push for a parliamentary inquiry if elected on 18 May.

Mr Pesec called for a halt to planning for apartment development at West Basin, throwing his support behind the Guardians of Lake Burley Griffin, who have opposed ACT Government plans to reclaim part of the lake and develop the area.

Government plans to redevelop West Basin into a residential, business and recreational precinct are moving ahead with the City Renewal Authority seeking a consultant to devise a development plan for the key lakeside area.

The Authority has already flagged the possibility of 2000 apartments as part of a major reshaping of West Basin into a waterfront community connected to the city, and tender documents describe the area as ‘unique’ in terms of the Indicative Land Release Program and Government revenue opportunities.

“Public meeting after public meeting has called for an end to this ill-judged proposal to fill in part of the Lake, one of the most recognisable and loved features of our national capital. Yet the ACT Government and the National Capital Authority press on regardless,” Mr Pesec said.

He took aim at his opponents in the main parties – Liberal Senator  Zed Seselja and former Labor senator Katy Gallagher – for not doing anything to address community concern about the West Basin plans, which he said would severely degrade the environmental, heritage and social values of Lake Burley Griffin.

“The incoming Federal Government should immediately approve the heritage listing of Lake Burley Griffin and its landscape setting to ensure the permanent protection of the lake shores from projects like West Basin which are little more than a blatant revenue grab by the ACT Government,” Mr Pesec said.

“The Kingston Foreshore development is an example of what can happen when commercial interests prevail over good planning. Our national capital values must never again be traded away for short term budgetary gain.”

Mr Pesec said he recently met with the Guardians and was impressed with their commitment to the Lake and its importance to Canberra’s status as a planned city of world renown.

“I support the Guardians’ call for a review of West Basin planning with community involvement,” he said.

Mr Pesec said that if elected to the Senate on 18 May he would press for an inquiry into West Basin by the Federal parliamentary committee on the National Capital and External Territories.


What’s Your opinion?


Please login to post your comments, or connect with
34 Responses to
Pesec calls for halt to ACT Government’s apartment plans for West Basin
Filter
Showing only Website comments
Order
Newest to Oldest
Oldest to Newest
chewy14 2:21 pm 07 May 19

Well there goes any chance I had of voting for this guy.

“Public meeting after public meeting has called for an end to this ill-judged proposal to fill in part of the Lake, one of the most recognisable and loved features of our national capital”

Public meetings filled with a tiny minority of self selected NIMBY’s who don’t want to see anything happen on empty and vastly unused land unless it solely benefits themselves.

Also a wildly ironic statement from Pesec talking about a lake foreshore that’s only 50 years old. Perhaps we should go back to the river, which was also one of the most loved features of our city before development and progress created the lake.

8:32 pm 06 May 19

Building this will kill what has been done in the city and Braddon. Anyway who want to sit at lake Burpy Gherkin and look at the blue green algae.

Bolbi 8:04 pm 06 May 19

The government has produced a strategy that says they will delink parking from commercial development and not require apartments to have a minimum number of parking spaces. The people living here will be absolutely dependent on walking, cycling or public transport, so you would want to be sure major shops are extremely convenient.
If you want to visit the area from outside, you will be dependent on the same ways of getting in. I don’t think it will be viable to bring your kayak in on public transport. Of course, the government closed the boat and surf ski hire place a few years ago, so usage has decreased in recent times.
In the government’ strategy, they claim they will increase canopy from 19% to 30%. This won’t be done by protecting treed areas such as West Basin but will instead be lining roads and cycleways. The government describes the treed areas as “underutilised”. Beware any clumps of trees, they are a waste of space which are better used for apartments.
Floriade is likely to become unviable in its current location due to the reduction of nearby parking. Required used of public transport will not be popular with tourists. This is likely the real driver why they want to relocate Floriade.
The balloon festival is likely to become unviable due to the need to go up to 1000ft if within 300m a populous area. That’s a significant chunk of the basin and means balloons have decreased flight path options.

HiddenDragon 6:22 pm 06 May 19

It may well be that this proposal would result in another distinctly sub-optimal development, and that people who know and care about the “Burley Griffin Vision”, heritage and environmental values etc. will be disappointed at best, and mortified at worst, by what would result from it – but a little city council/regional government which was set up on the assumption that it would be heavily reliant on land sales (and which has fewer taxing options than larger and more economcally diverse jurisdictions) has to get the money from somewhere.

With the latter issue in mind, the best thing an independent Senator for the ACT could do would be to press for a parliamentary inquiry into the medium/longer term fiscal viability of the ACT – and options for addressing a fairly obvious trajectory, particularly if there are to be relatively strict “national interest” limits on further development.

With even more pressing signs about the fiscal viability of the NT, and to some extent, Tasmania, some strategic action in the Senate on this question would be timely and of broader relevance.

    ffisher 9:33 am 07 May 19

    Barr was happy to tout the “Burley Griffin Vision” to saddle us with a light rail to nowhere resulting in a dysfunctional bus/transport system. Like everything, its a case of cherrypicking.

5:48 pm 06 May 19

I'd still vote for him ahead of Zed, even if I think this inquiry is a waste of money.

5:02 pm 06 May 19

I thought he was running for the federal senate- obviously doesn’t understand planning is an ACT government function. Strange

    5:28 pm 06 May 19

    Narrelle Kelly anything to do with the lake requires National Capital Authority (federal) approval

    6:09 pm 06 May 19

    Narrelle Kelly yeah, I think the plan is to bring back the NCA so there’s a proper planning authority, rather than a bunch of developers, driving ‘progress’ in this city.

4:54 pm 06 May 19

it's not a federal issue?

    5:27 pm 06 May 19

    Hans Dimpel the lake is under the NCAs control. The west basin plan requires the reclamation of some of the lake so therefore it is a federal issue.

4:11 pm 06 May 19

Just hurry up and build something, we've seen so many artists impressions and ideas of restaurants and new open spaces yet with all the mucking about we're still stuck with an empty carpark

4:07 pm 06 May 19

That's a shame, I was prepared to vote for him until now. I'm 100% behind the city to lake/west basin plan.

    4:55 pm 06 May 19

    Mikey Moore it is not part of the original WBG plan, and will ruin the view for everyone except those wealthy enough to afford the apartments. The lake is for everyone to be enjoyed. It’s not for developers to exploit.

    His decision to block this development makes me want to vote FOR him!

    7:01 pm 06 May 19

    Bethany Williams agreed.

    5:54 pm 07 May 19

    A parliamentary inquiry by the NCET Committee gives transparency, accountability and everyone with an interest gets a say. 🤷‍♀️

3:13 pm 06 May 19

I do not want to see waterfront apartments. But a thriving life with waterfront beaches, playgrounds, restaurants and only cottage industry shops and weekend music for a 'bus depot' experience to attract the people, young and old as well as promote recreational boating.

    4:56 pm 06 May 19

    Ursula Gamal I would LOVE to see a Southbank style waterfront beach, restaurants, shops, etc. that would be amazing!

2:56 pm 06 May 19

Really what the lake needs is agitation to help prevent algal growth. Maybe we should encourage more boating on it?

2:50 pm 06 May 19

I’m actually hugely keen on city to the lake, and don’t see any problem with activating two opposite corners of the lake more heavily.

2:37 pm 06 May 19

There is a lot of whinging so its hard to understand the actual reasons. I mean there are a lot of people who think every single thing the government does is wrong. The lake does need more facilities and needs more use. Building some more apartments and hopefully restaurants and cafes in a few areas will help this. The reality is right now that apartments are sitting at 1% vacancy rates, so despite the opposition to them being built, they are being lived in.

    3:15 pm 06 May 19

    Justin Watson the lake gets a lot of use. Not everything has to be coffee shops and apartments. We have to fight hard to keep the lake edge parkland and fend off greedy development proposals. If developers had their way they would pave over every nature reserve and parkland.

    3:33 pm 06 May 19

    Warwick Penn Bradly most of it is nature reserve and parkland and I want it kept that way, but as a lake user (i kayak on the lake) it is underused. It doesn't need a lot of development, but some would be good. Canberra is about the only city I've been to in the world with such a nice waterfront, that is hardly used. We can have a good balance of both natural beauty and some reasons to bring people to the lake.

    4:04 pm 06 May 19

    Justin Watson there are far too many people in this city who would like to see Canberra stay the way it is or even regress to what it was many years before

    4:07 pm 06 May 19

    But canberra doesn't own the lake

    4:14 pm 06 May 19

    Canberra could use some nice waterfront restaurants, there's a few at Kingston and that's about it, the ones at Belconnen aren't somewhere you'd go for a nice meal, it'd be nice to have some nice restaurants with a view over the lake so people can enjoy it, link it up with the new park next to the bridge and people can go for a nice evening walk around the lake too, whilst they're at it, build a damn underpass to Commonwealth Park so when Floriade is on the road doesnt clog up with those stupid traffic lights.

I do believe that the National Capital Plan (NCP) should be complied with, that is the law.

However, the NCP is not perfect and is under continuous review. The National Capital Authority is very happy to receive and consider proposals for amendment.

In this context, I support the view of the Guardians of Lake Burley Griffin that the current NCP requirements for West Basin are flawed. The current NCP objectives for West Basin took effect in 2006 and have been retained in the current version. There are many problems including a serious lack of respect and protection for the Griffin Plans, the heritage of the Lake and the significant vistas across the Lake.

There are other problems with the current NCP but the issue of immediate concern to me is West Basin.

You can read about this in much more detail at: http://lakeburleygriffinguardians.org.au/media/LBGG-SoR-Urban-Design-West-Basin-03.04.19.pdf

    Arjay 3:21 pm 06 May 19

    Anthony, the Lake Guardians don’t give a toss about any of the Griffin plans and never have. They are a loud, unrepresentative rabble of self-appointed gatekeepers who have taken it upon themselves to dictate how the lake should be enjoyed by people who actually live here. 95% of their complaints can be boiled down to “I don’t personally like this change” and should be treated as such.

    I am a Rabbit™ 3:46 pm 06 May 19

    Hi Anthony,

    Are you willing to declare if you have any vested interests in the area – such as property?

    Anthony Pesec 6:31 pm 06 May 19

    Hi Rabbit. I don’t own any property near West Basin.

Arjay 12:56 pm 06 May 19

Anthony Pesec is happy to talk up the importance of the National Capital Plan, and has recently claimed that it is being “ignored” by the ACT Government.

So why is it that when the ACT Government proposes a development that is entirely consistent with the provision for West Basin outlined in the NCP, he calls for it to be halted?

Is the NCP a hallowed document that should be adhered to at all times, or are we allowed to simply pick and choose which elements should be followed based on personal preference? One or the other, Anthony!

    Anthony Pesec 6:32 pm 06 May 19

    I do believe that the National Capital Plan (NCP) should be complied with, that is the law.

    However, the NCP is not perfect and is under continuous review. The National Capital Authority is very happy to receive and consider proposals for amendment.

    In this context, I support the view of the Guardians of Lake Burley Griffin that the current NCP requirements for West Basin are flawed. The current NCP objectives for West Basin took effect in 2006 and have been retained in the current version. There are many problems including a serious lack of respect and protection for the Griffin Plans, the heritage of the Lake and the significant vistas across the Lake.

    There are other problems with the current NCP but the issue of immediate concern to me is West Basin.

    You can read about this in much more detail at: http://lakeburleygriffinguardians.org.au/media/LBGG-SoR-Urban-Design-West-Basin-03.04.19.pdf

ffisher 9:20 am 06 May 19

Canberra doesn’t really have much going for it in terms of attracting travelers. A city is a city and the world is full of cities consisting of nothing more than endless buildings. The one thing Canberra has is a beautiful vista comprising the Brindabella range and the ‘mountains’ around Canberra. Looking from the lake across to Black Mountain uninterrupted (well almost one building in Acton interferes with the view) is pretty spectacular and should be treasured and preserved. The views to the various mountains from the city are being obstructed/obscured by high rise development already. If this development (for money) impacts on that then it should not go ahead. We should be working to make Canberra the city you come to when you have had enough of visiting cities that are simply buildings where the history and character have been trashed for money.

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2019 Region Group Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
the-riotact.com | aboutregional.com.au | b2bmagazine.com.au | thisiscanberra.com

Search across the site