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John Thistleton

Capital pioneers

Beneath the surface dwells a town planner

John Thistleton Instead of fulfilling his dream to be a town planner, Mario Serenellini's design skills were used underneath Canberra.

MP tries to ease fears over new planning laws

John Barilaro, MP.

John Thistleton They are prime rural retreats for Canberra tree-changers and superannuation nest eggs for farmers who fear new planning rules will devalue them.

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Capital pioneers

Work ethic was handed down to children

NEWS: l-r Maria Efkarpidis chats with trader Mick Frugtneit ( manager of Toms superfruits) At the Belconnen Fresh Food Markets. 12th December 2013. Photo by MELISSA ADAMS of The Canberra Times
Sent from my iPad


John Thistleton The late Tom Efkarpidis left three children in Canberra with a lifelong love of supermarkets.

Capital pioneers

The new Aussies pitched in

Maria Efkarpidis as a little girl, with her father Tom, now deceased. Photos contributed. For John Thistletons migrant series.


John Thistleton They came from postwar Europe to Canberra with little or nothing, but they've made an indelible mark on the capital.

Capital pioneers

ACT built with construction skills of migrants

Hans Eberstaller **** Photo courtesy of National Archives of Australia. *** (must attribute).


John Thistleton Migrants lived in barracks, or garages and some took a punt on landing a job in Canberra.

Capital pioneers

Sotiria Liangis: From shepherd's daughter to queen of her castle

Mrs Sotiria Liangis.

John Thistleton Sotiria Liangis has spent about seven years building the O'Malley mansion and says it will stand for 300 years.

Students forced to live rough

Student accommodation.

John Thistleton Unprecedented accommodation guarantees, higher vacancy rates and lower rental prices are cold comfort for low-income university students heading for Canberra this year.

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New ASIO headquarters remain empty

The ASIO building on Parkes Way.

John Thistleton Six months after former prime minister Kevin Rudd opened ASIO's new headquarters, the intelligence agency is yet to occupy the $700 million Parkes building.

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National retailers flood to Fyshwick as landlords update buildings

Paul Powderly

John Thistleton An unexpected spike in industrial land sales has forced landlords to update older buildings and pushed high vacancy rates even higher.

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Majura Parkway: progress on track

Majura Parkway construction.

John Thistleton For motorists it may be a dusty construction site slowing traffic to and from Canberra's north, but from the air Majura Parkway is a trail of steady progress.

Civic eateries cast a wider net for diners

News. Chef Wayne Alger at work at Shorty's in Civic, for story about broader food culture in Civic since the arrival of big name restaurants in the Canberra Centre.   2 January 2014. Canberra Times photograph by Jeffrey Chan.

John Thistleton They're throwing open the windows in Bunda Street, Civic.

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Golf clubs teed off by water charges

Royal Canberra Golf Club groundsman Rob Curtin hand waters the 12th green last year.

John Thistleton Once free for those who could trap and store it in dams and tanks, water is becoming so expensive it is threatening the viability of ACT golf clubs.

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NCA chief Malcolm Snow aims to make most of Lake Burley Griffin

Malcolm Snow.

John Thistleton The National Capital Authority's new chief executive says Lake Burley Griffin is underused around the edges and on the water's surface.

Award-winning urban planner Malcolm Snow to head National Capital Authority

Malcolm Snow.

John Thistleton An urban planner will head the National Capital Authority in Canberra.

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Man robs Braddon supermarket


By John Thistleton A man has robbed the Braddon Supermarket, threatening staff with a kitchen knife on Saturday night and fleeing with cash.

Canberra at risk of being building plan black spot

Canberra's construction industry has been operating without architects in key areas.

John Thistleton Canberra's construction industry has operated for at least a decade without architects in key areas.

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Canberra's treat: Pull over, drivers, for your pick of produce

Craig Pratt travels to Canberra to sell cherries.

John Thistleton Life's fleeting on the edge of a busy road - especially at Christmas time.

Apprenticeships keep new generation in trade

John Thistleton Since her year 7 school days, Alissa McDermott wanted to be a cabinetmaker.

Help for Brindabella passengers

John Thistleton QantasLink has approval to operate on the Moree – Sydney route to help passengers left stranded by Canberra’s financially crippled Brindabella Airlines.

Plan for refugees to lift bush townships

Anne Kilcullen.

John Thistleton Anne Kilcullen believes marginal rural towns could become more viable if allowed to recruit asylum seekers.