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‘Bottleneck’ roundabout near new university site to get $30 million upgrade

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'Bottleneck' roundabout near new university site to get $30 million upgrade

The Petrie roundabout connecting Gympie Road, Dayboro Road and Anzac Avenue.

Photo: Google Maps

A “bottleneck” roundabout in the Moreton Bay region that has left motorists “fed up for many, many years” will be given a $30 million upgrade having been allocated funding in the upcoming state budget.

Fairfax Media can reveal the state government will announce on Monday the Petrie roundabout will be replaced by a reconfigured T-intersection featuring traffic lights, with work set to begin in 2020.

However, the Opposition Leader said the roundabout upgrades needed to be finished by 2020 because the new University of Sunshine Coast campus will open at the start of that year.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said an extra $22.5 million will be set aside in the state budget, set to be delivered on June 12, in addition to $7.5 million already committed.

Mr Bailey said the installation of traffic lights would improve traffic movements at the intersection and address local population growth.

“We are fixing the bottleneck at the Petrie roundabout where Anzac Avenue, Dayboro Road and Gympie Road meet,” Mr Bailey said.

“A preferred option was developed in 2016, which included replacing the roundabout with signals at a reconfigured T-intersection.”

However, LNP leader Deb Frecklington said the Palaszczuk government had missed the boat.

“The Palaszczuk government is trying to con the people of Pine Rivers by announcing projects they have no intention of building for years.

“This key road needs to be upgraded in time for the new university campus opening in 2020, but that won’t happen under Annastacia Palaszczuk.

“It’s not good enough that Pine Rivers locals have to wait another two years for work to even begin … Labor’s had almost three years to plan for this upgrade and they’ve done nothing.

“If Labor is serious about busting congestion and planning for the future, this upgrade needs to be fast-tracked in the upcoming budget.”

Member for Kurwongbah Shane King said locals would be able to have their say on the project.

“The community will have an opportunity to provide input during the detailed design phase, which is expected to be completed in 2019,” Mr King said.

“Importantly, this project will improve safety and connectivity in Petrie and reduce delays during peak periods. It will also reduce traffic queues and crash risk.”

RACQ transport, traffic and safety engineer Greg Miszkowycz welcomed the announcement and said drivers had nominated the Petrie roundabout on previous red-spot surveys, which were designed to identify stretches of road which needed to be prioritised for improvement work.

“This location has a history of congestion,” he said.

“Motorists have been fed up of the roundabout for many, many years.

“T-intersections are usually much safer for pedestrians and cyclists compared to roundabouts.

“This will hopefully go a long way to reducing the congestion and frustration for motorists.

“The new university campus will attract a greater number of vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists so these upgrades should ensure all road users can safely and efficiently access these new facilities.”

Mr King said the upgrade would ultimately benefit the thousands of students expected to attend the new University of the Sunshine Coast campus.

“The former Petrie paper mill site and surrounding suburbs have been declared a priority development area by the Palaszczuk government,” he said.

“(This) is expected to deliver up to 10,000 university student placements, 6000 ongoing jobs and $950 million in economic benefit.”

Mr Bailey said further investigations into land requirements and consultation with key stakeholders, Moreton Bay Regional Council as well as directly affected residents and businesses would continue.

Source: www.smh.com.au

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Infrastructure

City Deal a $58bn ‘Game Changer’ for Southeast Queensland

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City Deal a $58bn ‘Game Changer’ for Southeast Queensland

South-east Queensland could be green-lit for the biggest “city deal” in Australia, with a $58 billion proposal to guide its growth, and the prime minister announcing his support for the major plan.

With a focus on supporting diverse sectors within the region including housing and planning, tourism, manufacturing and education, the SEQ City Deal could also pave the way for government-owned land to be opened for development.

Queensland deputy premier Jackie Trad this week released Transforming SEQ, which highlights 35 “opportunities” that could be considered as part of the future City Deal, including six “game changers” for the region.

“Modelling by KPMG has shown a SEQ City Deal could stimulate an increase of up to $58 billion in our economy by improving the productivity and competitiveness of the region,” Trad said.

‘Game Changer’ for Southeast Queensland

Prime minister Scott Morrison will be meeting with the SEQ Mayors and Queensland government to discuss the proposal this week.

The City Deal, which involves all three levels of government — council, state and federal — would see government working on priorities to drive the SEQ economy.

Under a City Deal plan, all three levels of government sign an agreement to set the priority infrastructure projects and initiatives.

City Deal a $58bn ‘Game Changer’ for Queensland

Integrated land-use planning approach?

Property Council chief executive Ken Morrison described the announcement as “a game-changer for the region.

“Our growing cities and urban regions are the engine rooms of the Australian economy,” Morrison said.

“The city deal model brings together all levels of government around the same plan to boost productivity and jobs through targeted investment in city-shaping projects and infrastructure.”

Property Council Queensland director Chris Mountford said the council has been collaborating with state government and SEQ councils for nearly six years on the potential for a city deal.

“The State and local governments have also agreed in principle to a more coordinated integrated land-use planning approach,”

“Opening up under-utilised government-owned land for development has also been agreed as a clear opportunity to unlock economic activity, create jobs and build business confidence.”

City Deal a $58bn ‘Game Changer’

Growing population

The region’s current 3.5 million population is forecast to increase to 5.3 million within the next 25 years, ultimately requiring an extra 800,000 homes and additional one million jobs.

Focus has been placed on the recently released people mass movement study which identifies the impact of the expected population growth on the region’s ability to cope with future transport demand.

Minister for Cities Alan Tudge said he, along with the prime minister, will be meeting with the SEQ Mayors to discuss the Deal.

“We need to cater for this rising population and the SEQ City Deal will be a huge step forward,” Tudge said.

South-east Queensland is already home to over two-thirds of the state’s population.

The region is home to nearly one in every seven Australians.

The agreement marks the second city deal for Queensland following the policy being first established in Townsville.

So far, city deals have been developed for Western Sydney, Townsville and Launceston, and a further four more are currently under negotiation in Adelaide, Hobart, Perth and Geelong.

 

Source: brisbaneinvestor.com.au

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Infrastructure

Government considers sinking old trains for a rollingstock reef

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Government considers sinking old trains for a rollingstock reef

Queensland’s old trains could be sunk in Moreton Bay to create the state’s newest artificial reef.

Queensland Rail’s fleet of old electric multiple units (EMU) are being progressively replaced with the New Generation Rollingstock, which are being fixed to comply with disablity laws after being described as flawed “from day one”.

However, rather than end up on the scrap heap, a proposal is being considered by the government to turn a few of the old trains into an underwater tourist attraction in south-east Queensland.

A petition, lodged in the Queensland Parliament, is calling for a small number of the fleet of 87 EMUs to be reused as an artificial reef in Moreton Bay when they are retired.

Transport Minister Mark Bailey said he was happy to look at the idea.

“I like the idea of seeing these old trains support new life as artificial reefs in Moreton Bay or somewhere else appropriate along our coast and have previously requested Queensland Rail to examine it further,” he said.

“That said, any plan to sink trains to the sea floor would need to be carefully considered from an environmental, maritime, tourism and cost perspective.”

Queensland’s Department of Environment and Science has advised Queensland Rail it would consider a proposal to use two or four retired EMU or inner-city express [ICE] train units for an artificial reef.

Decisions would have to be made on whether the site would be used for marine life or also as a dive site.

Depth, access, stability in storms and maintenance would also need to be considered.

It is understood the department preferred to use artificial reefs constructed from highly productive, stable, purpose-built reefs with expected life spans of more than 30 years over scrap metal.

old trains for a rollingstock reef

No firm proposals have been received and no funding has been committed to the project or a feasibility study.

Greens MP Michael Berkman, who sponsored the petition, said supporting the voices of constituents was a great part of his job.

“The wrecks at Moreton Island are an amazing tourist attraction, and another artificial reef that commemorates Brisbane’s well-loved trains is definitely worth considering,” he said.

“The state and federal government would need to conduct a rigorous environment impact assessment, and traditional owners should get final say, but a “rollingstock reef” could be a beautiful addition to Moreton Bay.”

Rail lobbyist Robert Dow said the retired EMU trains were currently being stored in stabling yards.

“As to suitability for a reef, I’m not in a position to say either way, but my gut feeling is they’re too fragile and I don’t think they’d last too long in the ocean,” he said.

“They’re not like a ship, a ship is designed to be in the sea to a certain degree.”

There are several artificial reefs in Queensland, including at Moreton Bay, the Great Sandy Marine Park, ex-HMAS Brisbane, and ex-HMAS Tobruk.

Dive operators declared the sinking of the ex-HMAS Tobruk a “stuff-up” after it landed on its side, although the Queensland government said a report showed it could still be accessed by beginner divers.

Source: www.smh.com.au

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Infrastructure

$63b infrastructure plan to keep SEQ moving till 2041

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$63b infrastructure plan to keep SEQ moving till 2041

It’s going to cost $63.7 billion to keep South East Queensland moving over the next two decades, according to a study released today by the region’s mayors.

The population of the region is expected to grow by about 1.8 million people to more than five million people by 2041, putting extraordinary demand on the already strained transport network.

The SEQ People Mass Movement Study lists a total of 47 projects designed to keep city-to-city trips under 45 minutes and urban commutes under 30 minutes, including a faster rail network connecting the Sunshine Coast and Gold Coast via Brisbane and west to Ipswich and Toowoomba.

Brisbane Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said the infrastructure plan, coined the Strategic Transport Road Map, would keep the region “economically productive” while maintaining its liveability.

“Business as normal is not going to work, we need to increase the amount of money that is being spent in South East Queensland,” Cr Quirk said.

He said the plan would require an average expenditure of about $2.7 billion per year until 2041, which he said was “not an unrealistic figure”.

“What we are seeing in Sydney and Melbourne right now is this massive spend on infrastructure. That’s because they allowed it to get too far behind. We cannot do that in South East Queensland.”

He said there had been no shortage of plans for the region’s transport network, but it was time for all levels of government to unite with a shared vision.

Redland City mayor Karen Williams said the plan delivered the projects over a “reasonable amount of time with a reasonable amount of investment”.

“It’s not a matter of ‘can we afford this?’ It’s the fact that we can’t afford not to do it,” Cr Williams said.

Faster Rail is not as fast as high speed rail, which delivers speeds up to 350km/h, but could run at about 160km/h with top speeds of up to 200-250kmh, with limited stops.

It would be connected to the light rail networks on the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast in order to ease congestion on major arterials.

Other projects include the Brisbane Metro, Cross River Rail and road upgrades, including the Pacific, Sunshine, Centenary, Ipswich and Logan motorways and the Bruce, Warrego and Mt Lindesay highways.

The study also took into account emerging technologies including autonomous vehicles.

It was first proposed in 2016, and began in September 2017, with the aim of bringing together multiple local, state and national transport studies into one cohesive plan.

The South East Queensland region takes in the Brisbane City, Ipswich City, Lockyer Valley Regional, Logan City, Moreton Bay, Redland City, Scenic Rim Regional, Somerset Regional, Sunshine Coast and Toowoomba Regional council areas.

Source: brisbaneinvestor.com.au

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