Letters / Bush capital eroded by greed

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I WISH to draw your attention to the vandalisation and resumption of some of the Kippax ovals by the local ACT government as yet another of their notorious land grabs to increase their perception for high density and to make money, let’s be frank.

The string of about six ovals flanked by the shopping centre, tennis club and rugby club is a generous open space that people need to survive in a busy city. 

All are heavily used on the weekend and often at night with football and cricket facilities. 

The ACT government seems to have forgotten that local people need recreation opportunities that bring many health benefits to both adults and children. 

The ovals also serve to drain into Ginninderra Creek which needs runoff to flush out its waterway and to keep the biodiversity of birds, plants and animals along its banks flourishing. Ginninderra Creek is one of my favourite places to walk with my son and our two dogs and I have seen black cockatoos and other rarer birds along its banks.

Holt and surrounding suburbs have a high number of people who live in public housing and suffer disadvantage and probably do not in many instances know how to deal with government and stand up for themselves. 

I wondered how this land grab would go if they tried resuming ovals and other open spaces in Yarralumla or Forrest where many high-ranking public servants and academics live and know how to advocate for themselves. 

A part of the Aranda ovals was resumed where I live about six years ago opposite Canberra High School and many were vocally unhappy about it. However, as the land was used for a new fire and ambulance station most of us accepted it as a public good.

I concede that with the building of outer suburbs into NSW such as Strathnairn and others in Ginninderry, Kippax Shopping Centre will need more car parks and probably more facilities. However, how do extra townhouses and units on the oval increase public facilities? 

And why hasn’t the local government planned new shopping centres to open out that way as part of the new suburbs’ infrastructure. 

Molonglo Valley relies too much on the Cooleman Court shopping centre to the detriment of those in Weston Creek and you wonder why a shopping centre was not planned for in this development as part of infrastructure planning. 

The same can be said of Ginninderry; why isn’t a new shopping centre planned as part of the new infrastructure as soon as possible? Kippax Fair will need multi-storey car parks; why can’t they be built on the existing car parks as part of the revitalisation plan for Kippax Fair?

Taking away green spaces for profit’s sake on public ovals creates heat islands that go against the local government’s touted climate change strategy. 

Canberra as the bush capital, at least in Kippax, is being eroded by greed. What should be remembered by the ACT government is that they are only stewards of the public land, not the owners. The ovals belong to the local residents and other citizens of Canberra.

Karna O’Dea, Aranda

How can the Greens do this?

I AM writing to ask how the ACT Greens are able to, in all conscience, continue supporting the apology for a government that is ACT Labor? 

It has only been the support of the ACT Greens that has made it possible for Labor to govern in the ACT since (I think) 2012. 

I realise that entering into such an agreement has been hugely beneficial for the ACT Greens. Sadly, that agreement has meant they’ve been able to push a range of their platforms with all the resources and power of being in government. I guess for the ACT Greens that’s a plus.

Unfortunately, the ACT Greens’ platforms seem bereft of human compassion. The focus would appear to be based on ideology at all cost, rather than ensuring that government delivers quality of life and affordability for the citizens of the ACT. 

Light rail, I suspect, is one of the more costly and misdirected ideologies pushed through with the willingness of ACT Labor.

Last Saturday, I walked out into the bitter cold of a Canberra morning after spending a night at the Salvation Army hall with homeless guests. I again thought how, in the name of anything that is civilised, can this apology for a government continue to fail so abysmally when it comes to providing shelter for those most vulnerable and in need. 

As I look at the soaring high rises forever changing the skyline of Civic and Northbourne Avenue with advertising targeting the young and well heeled I wonder at the vision the ACT Greens have for this city. 

The enormous high-rise towers that are replacing the social housing that sat right near the Civic shops. The vacant, fenced off land along Northbourne Avenue, close to Civic, which was once social housing. The clapped-out, graffiti-riddled 1950s social housing blocks near Lyneham left to rot so they can now be destroyed so yet more developers can make a nice profit at the cost of ACT residents.

I think you get my drift. Please don’t bother to give me one of your platitudinous responses, Mr Rattenbury, and insult my intelligence. The day the ACT Greens walk away from their cosy arrangement with ACT Labor could be a good day for Canberra.

Gerdina Bryant, Watson

Stop this foolishness

LETTER writer Vi Evans (CN Letters, July 20) cites a previous correspondent as not having done her research on climate change. 

She claims to have done her research into the bogus claims of climate change advocates. Really?

Going on to the internet and falling down the rabbit hole of finding what you want to believe is not research. The internet is often an echo chamber reinforcing people’s prejudices. 

Yes, climate change has been proceeding for millions of years, but previous shifts of temperature and CO2 have taken thousands to tens of thousands of years. This gave the biosphere time to slowly adjust. Our climate change is happening over a handful of decades. This is the real danger. Our biosphere will not adapt quickly enough to escape mass extinctions. 

She claims we are being hoodwinked by those who want to sell renewables. Renewables don’t do harm. Petroleum and the oil industry does. She is being hoodwinked by these vested interests.

Also quoting the former president of Greenpeace out of context does not count as research either. This planet, your children and grandchildren are running out of time. Stop this foolishness.

Luca Collins, Reid

What would Jesus do?

THE Folau saga continues. Acceptance or rejection of homosexuality has occupied the minds of many religions over the millennia. 

Interested people may broaden their understanding of it by referring to Koran 7:80-81 and 26:165-166, and the links to Lut (known as Lot in the Bible). 

Exiting the matter of homosexuality, I’m not sure how Jesus would fare today – he used as broad a brush as Folau in saying: “An evil and adulterous generation demands a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah”. 

And poor old St Paul was hauled before the authorities to defend himself against the charge of preaching Jesus and, after offering a withering defence, was flogged and told to leave the city – and stop preaching Jesus. And long before Folau, he didn’t.

Colliss Parrett, Barton


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