ACT Planning is carrying out a review of the planning process. A District Planning Workshop was conducted in Molonglo Valley this month. The “listening report” has been released. Here is a short review.
As previously discussed, the planning review is adding district planning to bridge the gap between the ACT Planning Strategy and the Territory Plan. The community preferences for the district should be captured in the District Plan. Transport was considered under the strategic directive “accessibility” (see the ACT Strategic Plan). In general, however, ACT Planning does not feel responsible for transport as it belongs to ACT Transport’s (TCCS) portfolio.
The listening report mentions cycling only once.
Cycle paths: improving local cycle paths, such as creating connections to the river corridor, to group centres and the city centre.Molonglo Valley District Planning Workshop, ACT Planning Review and Reform Project, 7 June 2021, page 4
Cycle paths to group centres would be Local Community Routes, and a cycle path to the city a Main Community Route. The latter is proposed with the CBR Cycle Route 10 Coombs to Civic Cycleway. The completion date for this project is quite late (2030s). The east-west bridge over the Molonglo River must be built first. The local group centre to the south of the river is not planned for completion until later this decade. In Molonglo 3, on the other side of the river, the completion date for the group centre is wildly uncertain.
The immediate benefit of this report is that it has once again confirmed that cycling infrastructure is important. The retired MLA, Caroline Le Couteur, has talked about this since 2012. Nine years is a long time for the same discussion. The development of the Molonglo Group Centre would suggest the pain is not over yet.