Light rail 2020 – call to community to join the Taskforce
  • Thursday 19 January 2012

Sunshine Coast Council today called for community members passionate about the future of the Sunshine Coast to help with its transformation by nominating to join the Light Rail 2020 Taskforce.

Nominations are now being taken for two Sunshine Coast community representatives.

On 24 August 2011 Sunshine Coast Council resolved to establish a skilled taskforce with representation from council, business and the community, and develop a business case for light rail. The target is to deliver a sleek, modern light rail on the Sunshine Coast by 2020.

Integrated Transport Portfolio Councillor Vivien Griffin said a visionary taskforce with drive and determination would be the catalyst needed to turn light rail into a reality on the Sunshine Coast.

"The taskforce will be charged with building a coalition of support for the project within the community and clearly articulating to business, stakeholder and community groups the impact of a "do nothing" approach and the continued expansion of car dominant development and reliance," Cr Griffin said.

"The delivery of light rail to the Sunshine Coast, ideally within the next decade, will require strong partnerships."

"A key role of the taskforce therefore, will be to build and develop relationships with State and Federal Governments, stakeholders and businesses and to act as an advocate for project funding from both government and private sources."

Project Leader Sunshine Coast Light Rail Project, Ken Deutscher, acknowledged the role of the taskforce was vital to the success of the light rail project.

"The taskforce is an innovative way to improve the links between the project team and the business community, the tourism and education sectors and the general public," Mr. Deutscher said.

"Here on the Sunshine Coast we have the opportunity to shape our region by developing a light rail service as the backbone of a much larger and more attractive public transport system that people will want to use.

"Community representation on the Taskforce will ensure we stay in touch and continue to create momentum.

"We are looking for local residents who are forward-looking and passionate about making the Sunshine Coast a better place in the future and who are prepared to make a positive contribution to the development of the light rail 2020 project."

Other taskforce members will be invited directly by council due to their existing roles in the business community or relevant stakeholder organisations.

Members will work with the council project team, elected councillors and senior executives to develop a business case for light rail on the Sunshine Coast which will also include review and rapid assessment of other transport options.

They will deliver the pre-feasibility study by the end of April 2012. Future requirements for taskforce work beyond April 2012 will be determined by council in deciding whether to progress to a full feasibility study.

The nomination period is open from Thursday 19 January until Tuesday 31 January 2012.