Plenty Road track maintenance
Read 17-minute stories and join #onboardbookclub
E-Class trams on Route 11 & new passenger info displays - all part of improving Melbourne’s tram network
Infrastructure Tasmania boss Allan Garcia considers new bridge and light rail projects
Nalder finds light rail ‘unviable’
New East Brunswick tram terminus being built in second phase of Route 96 upgrade
Prime Minister Tony Abbott uses ACT light rail project as example of how to fund public transport
Man injured while working on light rail network in Sydney's CBD
Fuel cell tram framework agreement
Adelaide tram drivers to stop work
MAYOR Tom Tate has rejected a push to send the light rail west after it reaches Burleigh, saying it won’t happen as the case simply does not “stack up”.
A petition with 1500 signatures backed by State Member for Burleigh Michael Hart has called for stage 3B of the trams network to turn west at West Burleigh Road and link with heavy rail at Varsity Lakes instead of continuing south along the Gold Coast Highway through Palm Beach.
Cr Tate said the proposed change would double the cost of the project and go against the mandate he was voted in on.
“I would say it would double the project length and budget, and create less patronage,” he said. “If you were to look at it financially, the business case is not going to stack up.”
Cr Tate said the plan to have the light rail continue along the Gold Coast Highway to Palm Beach and Gold Coast Airport already had the support of the Gold Coast community.
“They come up with other routes when they have a petition of 1500 — I took to the election that we wanted light rail to go down the ocean side on the highway and 73 per cent of Gold Coasters voted me in on that,” he said.
Mr Hart said he wanted a feasibility study to weigh up the benefit of a connection to the Varsity Lakes train station and then to the airport, instead of a light rail-only option from Burleigh.
The light rail path along the Gold Coast Highway as originally proposed by GCC in 2015. Photo: Supplied.“I support the light rail now that we have got it,” Mr Hart said.
“I am for linking to the heavy rail at Helensvale and to get to the airport, but to send (light) rail down the highway through Palm Beach will cause way too much disruption and quite significant property resumptions.”
Mr Hart said he would prefer to see an extension of the heavy rail to the airport, and argued a light rail link to the Varsity Lakes train station would service more passengers.
“I believe it is more important we have bums on seats than to take it down past the ocean,” he said.
The option B route. PHOTO: Supplied“The state Government already owns the rail corridor all the way to the airport and the expansion of the M1 has taken into account the area, so why not use that?”
Mr Hart questioned the viability of the council’s original consultation on the project.
“We are aware there was only something like only 200 people from Palm Beach contributed to it, out of those spoken to,” he said.
State Member for Burleigh Michael Hart. PICTURE: STEWART McLEANTransport Minister Mark Bailey said the petition would be “given due consideration’’.
“The final alignment has yet to be decided, nor have the final station locations been identified,” Mr Bailey said.
Infrastructure Association of Queensland CEO Steve Abson said a passenger rail extension like that proposed from Varsity Lakes could be expected to cost between $80-90 million per kilometre for capital works alone.
The cost of the Gold Coast light rail to date had run to $84 million per kilometre in total, including early development works and maintenance.
A proposed western route. PHOTO: Supplied.Palm Beach resident Karen Rowles, who put the petition forward, argued light rail south of Burleigh would not be used.
“Southern communities don’t want it and don’t need it. We have a great bus system. The light rail should be going west instead,” Ms Rowles said.
“We think a heavy rail extension from Varsity to the airport is a priority.”
Ms Rowles said residents were concerned about rezoning along the light rail route.
A separate online Change.org petition opposed to the light rail following the Gold Coast Highway south through Burleigh and Palm Beach has more than 8000 signatures.
A business case study for the$600 million stage 3 of the light rail, from Broadbeach to Burleigh Heads, has yet to be completed before funding is allocated.
Karen Rowles. Photo by Richard Gosling
This article first appeared on www.goldcoastbulletin.com.au
About this website
Railpage version 3.10.0.0037
All logos and trademarks in this site are property of their respective owner. The comments are property of their posters, all the rest is © 2003-2019 Interactive Omnimedia Pty Ltd.
You can syndicate our news using one of the RSS feeds.