Tuesday, 21 February 2023
Suburban Rail Loop
Suburban Rail Loop
Ann-Marie HERMANS (South-Eastern Metropolitan) (17:54): (47) My adjournment is to the Minister for Transport and Infrastructure in the other place. The action I seek is for the minister to join with me to meet with Heatherton residents concerned about the impact of the proposed Suburban Rail Loop stabling yard and to see what impact it is going to have on local sporting facilities, livability and the environment. The City of Kingston in the South-Eastern Region has continued to grow and develop, and with its population the demands for a significant new sporting facility have become urgent. Sporting needs include football, cricket, soccer, hockey, baseball, cycling and the development of more sporting opportunities for women and girls.
At the same time, local residents have been waiting for a chain of parks – a crucial open-space project to allow south-eastern residents to enjoy nature and the great outdoors, and it has been promised for about three decades. Over these three decades the City of Kingston has earmarked the Delta site, a prime piece of land in Heatherton abutting many homes and adjacent to the protected green wedge zone. But instead of using this land to support local sport, open space, livability and the environment, this government wants to rip it up, pave over it and use it as a stabling yard for trains. True to form, the government has forgone any meaningful community consultation. Groups like Move the Train Yard have been brushed off, and many residents are set to have their livability ruined and home values slashed. This has been ignored. Residents are right to be dismayed.
If the Liberal–National coalition had been elected to government, the local council would have received our commitment of $20 million towards a new active recreation reserve at this site, and we would have sought to engage an alternative and far more suitable site for the stabling yards. But for now, the least the minister can do is come to my community – our community – and listen. I have already met with some of these residents, environmental groups and lobby groups, and I ask the minister to join me to hear our residents and work with them and not against them. So I seek this action from the minister: come with me; come and meet the people.