(Click image above to view speech in full)
The open and consultative mantra of this Labor government is nothing but hollow words—just ask the people of Carseldine. This October marks one year since the Deputy Premier and the member for Sandgate, without any warning to locals, stood on the former QUT Carseldine campus, held a press conference, showed off some pretty artist impression drawings and callously foisted this development on Carseldine residents. What is more, this is a Deputy Premier who comes into this chamber and spruiks her greenness at any opportunity, but the reality is that this is a Deputy Premier who is determined to ram through a plan that will turn playing fields, bushland and green space into a medium-density urban residential development with over 900 dwellings that will house 2,000 residents.
It is one year of the Palaszczuk Labor government treating the concerns of Carseldine locals with contempt. It is one year of ignoring the real concerns of local residents about their community and the impacts that this type of development brings. I recently met with Economic Development Queensland, and it is clear that the Deputy Premier—the worst infrastructure and planning minister this state has ever seen—is insistent on forging ahead with this project in its current form. I asked EDQ if the plan could at least be changed to have a green buffer along Beams Road to preserve some of the bushland. The response was no. That is because the consultation process was framed towards getting the outcome that the government want, not what the residents want.
When the government could not get support from the local community, they paid people in focus groups who lived outside the electorate in order to look like there was support for the project. What a sham! This is what local residents are saying to me. One resident wrote:
We are disappointed like the hundreds of Carseldine residents that oppose the planned Carseldine Urban Village. There seems to be no forward planning to cope with the increased traffic. Good playing fields are to be ripped up and replaced. This project is selling off a Government asset to housing developers.
Another has asked me, ‘What more can we do to actually make sure our community’s concerns are not just heard but considered?’
It is time for the Deputy Premier to jump off one of the few trains that she has running to come to the Aspley electorate and speak to the locals to hear their concerns firsthand, because to date she has not had the guts to accept our invitation. This just shows the arrogance of this government. Their lack of concern for our community has no bounds, and don’t Carseldine residents know it. As much as this government tries to spin it, the fact is that the land that the development will sit on will be sold. Let me be clear: this government is breaking their word not to sell assets. This is an asset sale.
This whole process has been insulting to residents living in Carseldine, but it has become characteristic of the Palaszczuk Labor government and the Deputy Premier not to listen and to say one thing and do another.