The absence of funding in the State Budget for Redlands roads highlights the need for alternative and innovative options to be considered to clear traffic congestion hotspots, says Mayor Karen Williams.
Cr Williams said a market-led proposal (MLP) remained the best option to fast-track much-needed roadworks to address worsening traffic congestion in a number of areas of the Redlands.
“Residents made it very clear to us before and during the election campaign that congestion was a major issue, and we know the worst choke point is Cleveland-Redland Bay Road,” she said.
“While this is a State-controlled road, we do not expect it to be on the State Government’s roads agenda any time soon so need to find other ways to upgrade the road, which is one of the major links within our city.
“If we are to get this work started and finished, the best option looks to be a partnership between Council, the Government and the private sector.
“Council is in a strong financial position and we are well placed to be able to contribute funds which could bring forward by several years a project that is urgently needed in the Redlands. Any contribution from us would be an investment in our future and be repayable by the State.
“The reality is we just cannot afford to do nothing. As this road does not seem to be a priority for the State, we have to convince them that it is for us and we are ready to work with them and the private sector to complete the work.”
Division 3 Councillor Paul Golle supported taking action to reduce congestion.
“As the councillor for Division 3, I understand more than most the traffic congestion issues growing out of the push from State Government to continue the forecasted growth in the Redlands,” he said.
“Any opportunity we have to decrease traffic congestion in the area will greatly benefit the residents I stood to represent and look forward to considering ideas to create better community outcomes for the city.”
Cr Williams said a report commissioned by Council as part of work by the Cross Boundary Working Group showed the worst traffic congestion within the Redlands was mainly on State-controlled roads. It identified Cleveland-Redland Bay Road as a priority for consideration as a MLP.
“The one exception was Rickertt Road in the city’s north, which has been a worsening choke point for many months,” she said.
“Redland City Council upgraded the road within Redland City and the main choke points now are within the Brisbane City Council area.
“I am pleased that the Cross Boundary Transport Working Group – consisting of local government, state and federal politicians and council and State Government technical officers – has delivered results, with BCC committing $15 million to the upgrade of Greencamp Road and the Federal Government committing another $5 million for work on Rickertt Road to clear congestion.”
Division 10 Councillor Paul Bishop said: “I would hope that any proposed allocations of funding would be integrated into a holistic solution that is designed and managed by traffic engineer experts across all departments and levels of government.
“This will ensure long term improvements are made in the most appropriate areas to increase traffic safety and flow, benefiting motorists and cyclists for years to come. While I welcome pledges to assist the issue, I do not support political promises that are not integrated or strategised by expert road network planners.”