Council pushes for CoastConnect sooner
  • Saturday 01 August 2009

An early start for the $350 million CoastConnect public transport project is a key aim outlined in the Sunshine Coast Council’s submission to the state government on this vital initiative.

Council’s submission on CoastConnect—the state government’s public transport corridor between Caloundra and Maroochydore—will be discussed at the General Meeting of council on Monday.

Integrated Transport portfolio holder, Cr Vivien Griffin said the Sunshine Coast’s economic advantage depends on integrated transport and public transport options.

“The way we live, work and play on the Sunshine Coast depends on high quality, attractive public transport options—all linked to significant state government projects like CoastConnect,” Cr Griffin said.

“Great infrastructure boosts employment, the regional economy and our goal of sustainable living which is why council is doing everything it can to see CoastConnect delivered sooner rather than later.

“However the council is also prepared to commit substantial funds towards bringing this project forward.”

Cr Griffin said council is investing heavily in integrated transport over the next five years, demonstrating its determination to deliver quality public transport options.

“Next year, council has committed over $5.5 million for infrastructure directly related to the CoastConnect corridor,” Cr Griffin said.

“This includes a $3 million plus upgrade of Tooway Creek Bridge, new bus shelters along Nicklin Way, designing the Brisbane Road upgrade and four lanes along Erang Street, from Nicklin Way to Saffron Drive, among other works.

“This is part of nearly $100 million from the Capital Works Budget for public and active transport projects over the next five years, $15 million in additional projects that will be funded over this period by the new Public Transport Levy and social change initiatives like TravelSmart.

“Council means business when it comes to its investment in transport and is keen to work more closely with the state on CoastConnect to maximise the return.”

Cr Griffin said council’s submission on CoastConnect advocates a closer working relationship with CoastConnect and the Department of Transport and Main Roads (DTMR).

“Council is seeking greater collaborative involvement with CoastConnect so is proposing to the DTMR to establish a Technical Working Group made up of representatives from council and the DTMR,” Cr Griffin said.

“The group would be charged to improve design outcomes and to explore partnership funding arrangements and hasten the delivery of complimentary council funded projects.”

Council’s submission on CoastConnect will be referred to the full meeting of council for endorsement on Thursday 6 August to be held at Caloundra.

Council’s submission on CoastConnect will be finalised and forwarded to DTMR by 7 August after which time it will be available online www.sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au