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Tuesday, 3 May 2016
Page: 4189

Mr ZIMMERMAN (North Sydney) (13:31): My electorate, like Sydney itself, is defined by its great harbour and waterways. At the turn of the 19th century, Henry Lawson described the residents of the lower north shore as the 'harbour people'. The description remains true today, and it is not surprising that residents have a long history of activism in defence of our harbour environment.

Much has been achieved to protect and improve access to our harbour foreshores. I am particularly pleased the Turnbull government is continuing that work at a place rich in the history of the harbour—the former submarine base HMAS Platypus on Neutral Bay. Originally considered for sale and redevelopment, the site was saved by the actions of the local community, supported so effectively by my predecessor, Joe Hockey. Following a major remediation project and with the support of a $20 million commitment I worked to secure from the government, it is now ready for the next stage.

The federal government will transform Platypus into a new urban park that will be enjoyed by the entire community. The federal government's Sydney Harbour Federation Trust will be preparing a new management plan for Platypus, and they are seeking the involvement of residents in that process. I therefore want to encourage residents to attend a planning open day that will take place on Saturday, 14 May 2016, between 10 am and 3 pm on site at Platypus. It will be an important opportunity to talk to the trust about how this site will be shaped in the years ahead so we can make it a truly wonderful addition to the public domain around Sydney Harbour.