Sydney Heritage Fleet Site

(2:15pm 14 March 2012, Parliament House Sydney

Ms CLOVER MOORE: My question is addressed to the Minister for Planning and Infrastructure, and Minister Assisting the Premier on Infrastructure NSW. Will he investigate sites to accommodate the Sydney Heritage Fleet such as Cockatoo Island or Goat Island as they are not adjacent to densely populated areas and since residents of Pyrmont are concerned about noise and pollution impacts of a proposed industrial site at 1 Bank Street?

Clover with residents at 1 Bank Street

Clover with residents at 1 Bank Street

Mr Richard Amery: Barry is not going to take it for him—do not worry.

Mr Barry O'Farrell: I was just asking him.

Mr BRAD HAZZARD: The Premier is just giving me guidance, as he does, and we accept his guidance. I thank the member for Sydney for her question. The Government and I as Minister for Planning and Infrastructure are aware of the issues surrounding the Sydney Heritage Fleet and the subset problems of the Pyrmont Heritage Boating Club. I acknowledge that the member for Sydney has worked with me in my capacity as Minister for Planning and Infrastructure in a number of different areas. This is another area in which I propose to ensure that the Government works closely with the member for Sydney.

For the information of members who may not be aware, the Sydney Heritage Fleet is a working museum. It preserves maritime history and involves approximately 700 volunteers. Some of the significant ships in the fleet are the James Craig, the Lady Hopetoun and the Waratah. Motorists heading past Rozelle Bay can see the fleet undergoing renovation. It is progressing much better than did the former Government in renovating parts of New South Wales, and the fleet's renovation is not taking as much time as did the former Government's repair of the State's infrastructure.

Mr John Robertson: Oh, that hurt. That was a real heavy blow.

The SPEAKER: The Leader of the Opposition will come to order.

Mr BRAD HAZZARD: I am receiving a lot of suggestions on how to respond to the Leader of the Opposition, and they are all very good. Instead, I will be polite to him. I indicate to the member for Sydney that, as far as the Government is concerned, it is happy to look at support for the Sydney Heritage Fleet and work with her on the Pyrmont Heritage Boating Club. I am very conscious of the fact that its volunteers and associates do extraordinary work. During the last stages in the term of the former Government, a number of proposals were examined and, like so many projects undertaken by the former Government, there were lots of studies and lots of investigations, but of course absolutely nothing happened—except that we ended up with John Robertson as leader of a political party that consists of almost no representatives in the New South Wales Parliament. Other than that we reached a stage at which the current Government is quite happy to work towards achieving an outcome and move the project forward.

I understand a submission has been made to the Department of Planning and we will work with the various individuals who lodged it to see how we can progress it. I am conscious—and I raise this issue for the benefit of the Leader of the Opposition, who may not be aware—that the Pyrmont Heritage Boating Club is a group that works with people with particular health issues and mental health issues, and seeks to assist those who need upskilling for employment. I think both sides of the House would like to see the Pyrmont Heritage Boating Club supported, as well as the Heritage Fleet. We will do what we can.

We are happy to work with the member for Sydney and I look forward to any information the City of Sydney may like to give as we consider how we can best support both those activities. I understand the need for a move and I understand the residents' concerns about potential noise. All of those issues, like most planning issues in New South Wales, will now be considered openly, transparently and honestly, which is totally different to the way things were done in the days of Labor. It will now be out there for the whole community to see what we are doing. I am happy to encourage and support the City of Sydney in that process.