Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Time to Talk Roads, Rail and Aeroplanes; Integrated Transport Plan Vital for Productivity Lift

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

Time to Talk Roads, Rail and Aeroplanes; Integrated Transport Plan Vital for Productivity Lift

Article excerpt

Byline: erle levey

IT'S not a matter of what you don't want, its deciding what you do want and making sure it happens.

What will advantage the Sunshine Coast the most? An upgraded airport, a duplication of the main railway, a branch line into Maroochydore, light rail, widening of the Bruce Highway? .

Then there is the need for an effective national broadband network roll-out and reliable connections to homes and businesses.

It's time for politicians from all levels of government to work together to fund the development of an integrated regional transport strategy for the Sunshine Coast.

Sunshine Coast Business Council chair Sandy Zubrinich said it was essential to identify priorities and funding requirements by the different levels of government, and then actually deliver on it.

Her calls have been echoed by Urbis director Malcolm Aikman who will be guest speaker at a Maroochydore Chamber of Commerce lunch this week.

"The reality is the Sunshine Coast has been ignored for far too long,'' Ms Zubrinich said.

"While the recent Coalition announcement that $187million of the $6.7billion, 10-year fix of the Bruce Highway plan will be brought forward to the 2019/20 financial year is a start, it's nowhere near enough given the reliance the people of the Coast have on this highway, not just for freight and tourism but also for safety.''

Ms Zubrinich said the business community on the coast was united in its belief that our infrastructure priorities are a combination of road, rail and air and not just any one of these in isolation.

"The business council has repeatedly called on all three tiers of government - starting with both regional councils - to agree on an integrated transport strategy for the region and then lobby as a cohesive region for funding from state and federal governments. …

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