City Services Budget boost includes new recycling facility for Canberra

An investment of $26 million from both the ACT and Australian Governments will fund the construction of a New Recycling Facility for Canberra.

The facility will be built on the same site that was extensively damaged by a fire in December 2022, as well as the adjoining block where new technology will expand our capacity to sort and process glass, plastic, paper and cardboard.

The new facility will increase resource recovery by creating higher quality recycled products and reducing the amount of waste ending up in landfill. Funding will allow work to commence with a contract expected to be awarded in the coming months.

New community infrastructure and maintenance

The 2024-25 ACT Budget will support new and upgraded community facilities and infrastructure across our city.

A $2.5 million investment will deliver new toilets at Evatt Shops and Ruth Park in Coombs, an upgraded toilet at Mawson Shops and support the delivery of a new toilet near Bizant Street in Amaroo as part of the Yerrabi Pond Upgrade.

Over $2 million will drive renewal of our city’s playgrounds and skateparks, including safety improvement works, mulch and rubber soft fall top ups, and a program of regular audits and inspections.

The Government will respond to common requests at our much-loved libraries, investing in new portable phone chargers and more power boards and charging stations, in addition to improving building security.

Other initiatives include:

  • $950,000 for master planning of upgrades to the Mugga Lane and Hume Resource Management Centres
  • $750,000 for upgrades to dams
  • $300,000 for security upgrades to TCCS sites

Food Organics and Garden Organics Pilot enhanced

With our housing mix continuing to evolve, the FOGO pilot will be expanded so that more information can be learned from how households in different types of multi-unit developments engage with this service. The pilot currently services 5,300 households in Belconnen, Bruce, Cook and Macquarie and will have an additional 1,150 units added to it.

Mowing and horticultural maintenance services expanded

The impacts of climate change, including more, and more common, severe storm events, unprecedented weather patterns, and a growing city have created new demands on our mowing and horticultural maintenance services which require ongoing additional investment.

The 2024-25 ACT Budget will commit $5.824 million towards a new baseline of city maintenance, reinforcing resources in our mowing, in-house traffic management and tree management teams.

Ten full-time positions and eight additional mowers have been funded to deliver an expanded baseline capacity in our mowing teams. In the low season, mowing crews will assist with horticultural work across the city, including weeding, road edging and maintenance.

The Budget will also fund the continuation of a 10-person in-house traffic management crew to provide traffic management control for our mowing, litter picking, weed control and tree maintenance teams. This crew’s work has helped to maximise the safety of roadside workers and minimise the inconvenience for both workers and road and path users during maintenance activities.

The ACT Government has exceeded its target of planting 54,000 trees across the ACT from 2021 to 2024 with forecasts predicting over 60,000 new trees will be added to our tree canopy during this period. These staff will continue to be funded to care for our growing number of trees and continue plant more trees in an increasingly sophisticated way, drawing from Connecting Nature Connecting People initiative and other research and insights.

An $800,000 investment over four years will continue support for our volunteer park care groups to nurture and restore local parks and nature reserves, with a particular focus on weed management in the first year.

Quotes attributable to ACT Chief Minister, Andrew Barr:

Canberra’s extremely high quality of life ranking reflects the high standards of the liveability and attractiveness of our city. We are investing in the staff and equipment needed to maintain a high standard of service delivery in mowing, tree management and other city services.

This investment will respond to the demands of our growing population and changing climate to ensure Canberra remains resilient and flexible to shifting horticulture maintenance needs.

Quotes attributable to Minister for City Services, Tara Cheyne:

We are very pleased that work will soon start on the New Recycling Facility, following an extended period of time without this critical infrastructure being able to be provided in our city.

With the FOGO pilot proving very popular, and the numbers and types of multi-unit developments growing since its inception, it is timely for us to expand the pilot by more than 20 per cent to learn more insights from these household types.

We’ve learned that the only certainty about our weather now is uncertainty. Investing in an improved baseline of capability across our crews is the most critical way for us to better respond to these challenges.

/Public Release. View in full here.