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OUTRAGED southsiders have come out swinging at all levels of government over the Inland Rail project which will impact residents in Algester, Parkinson and Acacia Ridge.
It comes after the Southern Star published a report about the project which will see double-stacked freight trains as long as 3.6km pass along the existing track between Kagaru and Acacia Ridge.
The freight trains will run past homes, businesses, parks and schools and locals are worried about the long-term health risks of exposure to coal dust and the constant noise and vibration from the 24/7 transportation cycle.
A loaded coal train is seen passing through NSW. Photo: AAP Image/Dan HimbrechtsAnnie Vuu took to the Southern Star’s Facebook page to vent her frustrations: “Earlier this week the Premier displayed a high level of concern for the health and welfare of Queensland boxer Jeff Horn and his American opponent in their upcoming Las Vegas bout.
“Her concern being that horsehair gloves are dangerous and would cast a pall over their fight,” she said.
“The thousands of residents living between Acacia Ridge and NSW border need to see and hear that same level of concern coming from the Premier over ARTC’s proposal to freight coal along the Acacia Ridge — Kagaru rail corridor.”
OPINION: RAIL LINE TO NOWHERE
Jenny Smith added: “Great to see this story finally being taken seriously by a news outlet.
“I had a conversation with (Member for Logan) Linus Power and this is straight from the horses mouth. 1. The Queensland Government will not compensate homeowners whose property values decrease due to the Inland Rail. 2. The Queensland Government will not pay for the installation of double/triple glazing and airconditioning for those properties closest to the rail line. 3. The Queensland Government will not pay for or give reduced rates for the increased electricity costs incurred with said airconditioning running 24/7.
Coal will be carried along the route to Acacia Ridge.“So, not only are they allowing this rail project to take away our lifestyle and our health but they are also allowing us to be penalised for a project that we have no say in.
“ARTC do not consult, they dictate. It’s about time Mr. Turnbull, Mr. McCormack and the Queensland Government actually listened to the concerns of the people who will be affected directly by this project.”
Another Facebook user Warwick Weeks added: “The noise from the Logan Enhancement Project is bad enough through out the night in Parkinson at the moment but that is a short problem.”
Last week the Australian Rail Track Corporation and the three tiers of government in the area had their say on the Inland Rail project.
An Australian Rail Track Corporation spokeswoman said the ARTC and the Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) were working together to ensure “the best rail transport solution”.
Algester residents Mallory Wuthrich and Mei-Ya Lin with their children Joshua, 5, and Madeleine, 2 at Col Bennett Park under the existing train track have major concerns about the project. Photo: Kristy Muir“This is an existing operational rail corridor and Acacia Ridge has been a longstanding, nationally-significant intermodal terminal in operation for decades,” the spokeswoman said.
“ARTC is committed to meeting all of its planning and environmental legislative requirements.
“We will progress studies on noise, vibration and dust monitoring, ecology, water quality, soils and geology, transport, social and socio-economic factors and land use. They will help us understand the impacts of the planned enhancements and inform mitigation measures to be incorporated into the design.”
Councillor for Moorooka Ward Steve Griffiths said: “While I support the need for an Inland Rail line, it is unacceptable that the line finishes at Acacia Ridge and does not connect to the Port of Brisbane.
Councillor Steve Griffiths. Photo: AAP Image/Renae Droop“Goods will need to be off-loaded at Acacia Ridge and transported by heavy vehicles to the Port of Brisbane,” he said.
“Already, southside roads are congested with the impacts felt by businesses and residents alike.
State Member for Algester Leeanne Enoch has urged Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) CEO John Fullerton to establish Inland Rail consultation groups at Algester, Logan and Jordan.
Member for Algester Leeanne Enoch Member for Logan Linus Power and Member for Jordan, Charis Mullen want a community consultative committee for the Inland Rail project for the Algester/Logan/Jordan electorate area, as is the case in other parts of Queensland.Ms Enoch said residents at Algester (including Parkinson, Acacia Ridge), Logan and Jordan electorates were being left out of the conversation when it came to Inland Rail.
“The Palaszczuk Government is very conscious of the community’s concerns that they are being left in the dark on this project,” she said.
“As part of my discussions, I have made it very clear that it is of upmost importance to our community that the impact of increased dust, noise and the frequency of train movements is a priority for local residents.”
Federal Member for Rankin Jim Chalmers: “Locals absolutely deserve to know what’s happening with this project and how it affects them.
Shadow Minister for Finance and Member for Rankin Jim Chalmers. Photo: Kym Smith“The Turnbull Government needs to explain why there’s been such a lack of transparency on its watch and why locals haven’t been able to have a sufficient say.
“Unlike the Turnbull Government, Federal Labor will stick up for our local community and raise our community’s concerns in Senate estimates this week.”
Federal Member for Moreton Graham Perrett said: “Southside residents deserve to know how this essential part of the rail project that will affect them is going to be implemented. There is no doubt that residents will be significantly impacted.
This article first appeared on www.couriermail.com.au
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