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Queensland bus and train passengers will have a key say on the Environmental Impact Statement and reference design of the once-in-a-generation BaT project released today.

Premier Campbell Newman said the BaT project was an important piece of infrastructure that would ensure mums and dads spent less time travelling and more time with their kids.

“We want the people who are travelling on this vital link every day to have the final say and be proud of the project they helped create,” Mr Newman said.

“We have made changes to the project’s planning and design based on previous community feedback and this is reflected in the current design including keeping Dutton Park Station and Victoria Park open.

“We are on track to deliver this city-defining project as part of our strong plan for better infrastructure and better planning.”

Transport Minister Scott Emerson said the community can provide feedback on the latest reference design over the next six weeks following the release by the Coordinator-General of the Environmental Impact Statement.

“As we have proven before, we are a government that listens and so we encourage the community to provide feedback on the design before it is finalised,” Mr Emerson said.

“To find out more about the Environmental Impact Statement and Reference Design, six community information sessions will be held at locations within the study corridor.”

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said the 5.4-kilometre north-south tunnel with new underground stations at Woolloongabba, George Street and Roma Street would also provide a key link for buses using the new Legacy Way tunnel via a connection near Victoria Park.

“This project is a great example of different levels of government working together to address the city’s public transport capacity issues,” Cr Quirk said.

“It will double the capacity of the rail and bus networks, take pressure off existing infrastructure and make way for future growth.”

The Environmental Impact Statement and Reference Design will be available for a six-week display period.

Submissions about the Environmental Impact Statement can be made to the Coordinator-General, and can be made online or in writing until 5pm Monday 13 October, 2014.

The Coordinator-General will review the submissions on the Environmental Impact Statement and other information, and determine whether further information is required, prior to making a decision on the project. Major construction is scheduled to start in 2016 with completion due in 2020.

Further information and Reference Design Maps are available to view on the project website www.qld.gov.au/batproject and at the community information sessions.

To view the Environmental Impact Statement, make an online submission or to find out about how to make a written submission, visit www.dsdip.qld.gov.au/underground.

Almost 1,600 Queenslanders have already had their say on how to reinvest carbon tax savings back into public transport after one day of voting.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson said this strong level of feedback showed Queenslanders were keen to have their say on either cheaper public transport fares or more services.

“With the carbon tax gone, we want to re-invest the savings of about $30 million a year into improving public transport for families,” Mr Emerson said.

“As part our strong plan to improve public transport for Queenslanders we have already delivered an extra 3000 train and bus services and halved Labor’s planned 15 per cent fare hikes in 2013 and 2014.

“These savings allow us to do more and over the next two weeks Queenslanders are being asked whether they want reduced fares or more services.

“The choice is simple – either a five per cent cut and freeze to fares in 2015 for all metropolitan and regional government public transport services, or up to 1000 additional services across bus, train and ferry.”

Mr Emerson said LNP would never support the policies of Labor – on-going 15 per cent fare hikes.

“Whatever the public chose would be a win for public transport as we continue to improve affordability, frequency and the reliability of the network,” he said.

“If people choose a reduction in fares, a regular weekday passenger travelling from Brisbane to Chermside or Carindale could save an additional $99 a year.

“That’s a saving of $630 a year compared to Labor’s policy of on-going 15 per cent fare increases.”

The online survey started yesterday and can be accessed via the TransLink website http://translink.com.au/ or call on 13 12 30. It will close at midnight Sunday, 14 September.

 

Queensland families will enjoy cheaper public transport fares or more services following a decision to re-invest savings from the scrapped carbon tax towards public transport.
Premier Campbell Newman and Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson said members of the public would decide whether they want to pay less for their travel or would prefer increased bus, train and ferry frequency.
“With the carbon tax gone the Government now has more money to improve services for families,” Mr Newman said.
“We are calling on Queenslanders to tell us how the carbon tax savings should be spent, a five per cent reduction in fares or more public transport services.
“This announcement is part of our strong plan to lower the cost of living for families and revitalise frontline services, creating a brighter future for commuters.
“Under Labor, public transport fares increased while services declined, but we’ve been working hard over the last two and a half years to turn that around.
“Over the next two weeks we are asking for feedback from all Queenslanders on how best to spend the carbon tax savings, which are about $30 million a year.”
Mr Emerson said that whatever the public chose would be a win for public transport as we continued to improve affordability, frequency and the reliability of the network.
“We promised at the election to improve affordability and never go back to the bad old days of Labor where they put fares up by 15 per cent year after year,” Mr Emerson said.
“If people choose a reduction in fares, a passenger travelling from Brisbane to the Sunshine Coast each week day could save an additional $320 a year.
“That’s a saving of $2000 a year compared to Labor’s policy of on-going 15 per cent fare increases.
“The other option could see approximately 1000 more public transport services allocated across Queensland per week.
“As well as re-investing these savings, up to 80,000 passengers will continue to benefit from our successful free travel after nine weekly journeys initiative.”
An online survey opens on Sunday, 31 August and closes at midnight Sunday, 14 September via the TransLink website http://translink.com.au or call on 13 12 30.

 

 

Queenslanders driving to work and home to their families will be able to get there safer, more quickly and with fewer frustrations with an improved signage system around roadworks.

Premier Campbell Newman joined Minister for Transport and Main Roads Scott Emerson to inspect progress on the $296 million Yeppen South project site near Rockhampton, and announce the new approach that delivered on the election promise to provide better infrastructure and planning.

“One of the greatest frustrations for drivers is having to slow to a crawl when there are no roadworks taking place – whether that’s at night or on the weekend,” Mr Newman said.

“Under this new approach, engineers will be required to return signs to a safe speed when works aren’t being carried out.

“At the same time we’ll be working with police to step up enforcement around roadworks.

“We will be rolling this out to roadworks across the state to deliver more consistent signage, crack down on speeding and educate drivers and traffic managers of the dangers around roadworks.

“Labor neglected roads for more than a decade and did not consider it to be a priority, but we know our major highways are an economic lifeline.

“Improving signage will make them more efficient and eliminate the delays that impact thousands of people.”

Mr Emerson said the $8.5 billion deal with the Federal Government to fix the Bruce Highway, including a record $770 million this year, was a great example of where the new roadworks system would benefit drivers on long journeys.

“Our new Spruce the Bruce campaign is about asking Queenslanders to be patient and drive safely as we fix the Bruce Highway, but we still want to make sure we are doing everything we can to get drivers where they are going sooner,” Mr Emerson said.

“Our new approach will see drivers being better educated on the delays and will reduce the wait time as much as we can.

“We’re delivering on our promise to provide better infrastructure and planning in the most efficient way possible.

“We're spending $4.8 billion in 2014-15 on roads, a 37% increase compared to Labor. Over the next four years we'll spend $18.1 billion on road projects aimed at getting Queenslanders home safer and sooner.

“I thank all drivers for their patience and assistance as we future-proof our Queensland roads.”

All drivers are encouraged to measure our performance. If you see something that can be improved around roadworks, call 13 19 40 or let us know at www.tmr.qld.gov.au/Contact-us.

Plans for a $440 million road project to slash congestion for drivers between Caloundra and Maroochydore and create 2,500 jobs for the Sunshine Coast have been unveiled today.

Premier Campbell Newman said the proposed infrastructure project addressed concerns raised by Sunshine Coast members that local roads would become congested when the Sunshine Coast University Hospital opens in 2016.

“While Labor failed to invest in transport infrastructure on the Sunshine Coast, the LNP has a strong plan to build a brighter future for this region,” Mr Newman said.

“We want to ensure commuters spend less time in traffic and more time with their families.

This project means commuters can get to work, to schools and to the new hospital on time and without having to sit in traffic jams.

“We are developing plans for $440 million of road works to upgrade the Mooloolah River Interchange and to reduce congestion on Nicklin Way and the Sunshine Motorway, while providing direct access to the new hospital.

“This project has the potential to deliver up to 2,500 jobs during construction and will ensure Sunshine Coast families benefit from our plan to deliver better infrastructure and planning.”

The $440 million of works would include:

  • four lanes on the Sunshine Motorway between Kawana Way and the new interchange
  • a new connection from Nicklin Way to Brisbane Road
  • a new two-lane Kawana Arterial road from Kawana Way at Parrearra to the Mooloolah River interchange.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson said the LNP Government's new plan would address capacity issues while saving taxpayers millions.

“Labor had a $1.5 billion thought bubble, but failed to act on this important congestion issue for years.  They never budgeted for it and had no intention of delivering,” Mr Emerson said.

“I tasked the department to come up with a smarter, more cost-effective design that would reduce congestion and address capacity issues, while spending a third as much.

“It is now up to residents to provide their local members with feedback on whether this project is a priority and should be funded through our Strong Choices Investment Program.”

Mr Emerson said consultation on planning and design will continue and should be finalised by early 2015.

Up to 20,000 more train passengers a day are getting to work or school and returning home on time with Queensland Rail hitting an all-time high for peak on-time running.

Premier Campbell Newman and Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson said last financial year, more than 96 per cent of peak services arrived at their destinations on time – some of the best on-time running performance in Australia.

“The result is a credit to the ongoing focus of Queensland Rail staff to deliver a safe and reliable rail service as part of our strong plan for a brighter future for all public transport users,” Mr Newman said.

“We have improved on our record from the previous financial year that saw trains arrive on time during peak periods 93 per cent of the time, up significantly from performance under Labor which languished in the 80s.

“The LNP continue to focus on improving the reliability of public transport services which is great news for passengers wanting to get to work, school or university.”

Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson said in addition to more trains running on-time, a new timetable launched in January had delivered an extra 1000 train services each week with turn up and go frequency on the Beenleigh, Cleveland, Caboolture and Shorncliffe lines.

“In the first six months of the new timetable, we have been able to maintain on-time running which is now ahead of Sydney and Melbourne even though we have much tougher on-time parameters,” Mr Emerson said.

“We’ve also maximised existing resources to ensure our passengers have a more comfortable ride on their commute, with improved customer loading across all lines.  These figures show we continue to deliver on our election promise to improve reliability and frequency of the public transport network, which is driving more and more people to choose the bus and train over their car.”

Combined AM and PM peak on-time running:

Quarter

Actual

Jan-Mar 2012

86.20%

Apr-Jun 2012

89.37%

Jul-Sep 2012

89.68%

Oct-Dec 2012

94.58%

Jan- Mar 2013

94.08%

Apr- Jun 2013

96.40%

Jul-Sep 2013

96.91%

Oct-Dec 2013

96.09%

Jan- Mar 2014

95.79%

Apr- Jun 2014

96.16%

*Arriving within 3.59 minutes of the timetable, and 5.59 minutes for Gold Coast, Rosewood and Sunshine Coast services.

A new campaign will ask Queensland drivers to show patience as the Queensland Government rolls out a record number of roadworks aimed at making travel safer on the Bruce Highway.

Premier Campbell Newman and Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson launched the Spruce the Bruce campaign to highlight the almost 200 projects currently underway or due to start in the coming months on this vital arterial highway.

“The Bruce Highway is a 1700km lifeline for this state and if we want families and all drivers to be able to travel safely on it, we are going to need a record roadworks program,” Mr Newman said.

“I’m asking all Queenslanders – whether you are driving children to school, visiting as a tourist or hauling food and freight – to show some patience with the delays while we get on with this crucial program.

Spruce the Bruce will not only keep motorists informed of works being undertaken as part of our landmark $8.5 billion, 10-year deal with the Federal Government, it engages them in the project while on their journey.”

The campaign includes a social media competition, where Queenslanders can share a photo – old or new – of their favourite tourist spot along the Bruce Highway and upload it to Facebook for the chance to win their very own It’s Great To Be A Queenslander personalised plate.

Other measures also include Spruce the Bruce travel kits and online activities for kids.

Mr Emerson said the campaign reinforced the works included in the Bruce Highway Action Plan – Out of a Crisis which was promised at the 2012 election.

“Last year’s landmark deal with the Federal Government was crucial as it ensured a return to the traditional 80-20 Federal-State funding split, but now the real work is beginning – with projects from Boundary Rd at Narangba, right along the highway to Cairns,” Mr Emerson said.

“Anyone driving the 21 hours from Brisbane to Cairns should expect to be delayed by about two hours due to roadworks while we Spruce the Bruce and we ask motorists to be patient.

“Without these works and adequate funding, the RACQ predict between 300 and 400 people will die in crashes on the Bruce Highway over the next 10 years.

“While these works are underway it is important motorists understand they might be waiting longer now, but they will soon benefit from a Bruce Highway that is safer, has more capacity and is flood resilient.”

The Federal Coalition Government is contributing 80 per cent, or $6.7 billion, towards upgrades along the length of the Bruce Highway.

Visit www.qld.gov.au/sprucethebruce to find out more about the campaign or like our Facebook page facebook.com/TMRQld.

Queensland motorists will travel more quickly and more safely on a number of the state's major highways following the second round of a state-wide speed limit review.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson said some stretches of highway would see an increase to 110 km per hour.

"Highway changes will affect sections of the Leichhardt, Carnarvon and Warrego Highways, where the limit will go up from 100 km per hour to 110 km per hour," Mr Emerson said.

"Four speed zones on sections of the Peak Downs Highway from Te Kowai to Walkerston will be reduced to 90 km per hour."

Out of the 42 sections of road reviewed in the second round, 13 will see changes.

Six speed limits will be increased and three decreased. Four other roads will see the number and frequency of speed limit changes reduced to minimise confusion for drivers.

"This review is yet another way the LNP Government is listening to Queenslanders' concerns and making our state the safest place to work, live and raise a family," Mr Emerson said.

"Boosting consistency of speed on Queensland roads is part of our two-year, $350 million Road Safety Action Plan to drive down the road toll.

"Queenslanders should be congratulated on maintaining a record low road toll, with 39 fewer deaths than this time last year."

One hundred roads and speed limits were shortlisted for review after the State Government received 3300 submissions from the public.

Results are based on public input, crash data, local knowledge and recent upgrades.

Mr Emerson reminded motorists not to jump the gun on the impending speed limit changes.

"Changes to road signs will happen progressively and are expected to be completed by late August," he said.

"Engineers are now carefully assessing the final 38 review results."

All reviews have been conducted by engineers in line with Queensland speed limit setting guidelines and are endorsed by local Speed Management Committees.

Results from the remaining speed limit reviews will be published on the Transport and Main Roads website as they become available: http://www.tmr.qld.gov.au/speedlimitreview.

Passengers boarded the G: for the first time today, enjoying free rides on the new light rail system between the Gold Coast University Hospital station in Southport and Broadbeach South station.

Queensland Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson, Federal Member for Moncrieff Steven Ciobo and Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate thanked Gold Coast people for their patience during the two-year construction period for the $1.2 billion project.

“With the G20 and 2018 Commonwealth Games just around the corner, the Gold Coast is now in a good position to show off one of Queensland’s best holiday destinations,” Mr Emerson said.

“The light rail will give local residents far more than a world-class public transport network. Light rail has a proven track record for revitalising cities by connecting people and places, and attracting investment.”

Federal Member for Moncrieff Steven Ciobo said the Australian Government had invested $365 million in the $1.2 billion project.

“The Gold Coast Rapid Transit delivers a modern, integrated light rail system that helps meet the transport needs of Australia’s sixth largest city,” Mr Ciobo said.

“This project is a perfect example of a public-private partnership delivering the infrastructure this country needs for a more prosperous future.

“In peak periods, each light rail vehicle will be able to carry 309 passengers, which is the equivalent of 6 buses.”

Mayor Tom Tate said the project was Queensland’s first light rail system and the first for any regional city in Australia.

“It is an exciting time for the Gold Coast and I am confident this project will drive new investment and more local jobs. It is important for everybody to get behind the G:link and make public transport a part of everyday life,” Mr Tate said.

“I'm really excited about the opening and the future of this important piece of city-building infrastructure.”

The Queensland Government contributed $464 million to this project, the Australian Government contributed $365 million and the Gold Coast City Council provided $120 million to the project, with the GoldLinQ consortium also investing in the project.

The free light rail rides will run every seven and a half minutes between Southport and Broadbeach on Sunday 20 July 2014. Light rail services thereafter will run as per the GoldLinQ timetable from 5am to 11.50pm Monday to Thursday and 24 hours on Friday and Saturday.

Thousands of motorists have had their say about proposed changes to Queensland road rules for motorcycle riders.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson said more than 9000 responses were received on the motorcycle discussion paper which went live on May 22.

“There has been an overwhelming response to the proposed changes that aims to ease congestion on our roads and make it easier for motorcyclists to ride,” Mr Emerson said.

“Overall the responses contained very positive and helpful feedback, with most motorists in support of the proposed changes.

“The main topics for the discussion paper included lane filtering, helmet standards and how a rider should control their motorcycle.”

Results from the survey that closed on July 3 indicated:

  • 90 per cent of people were in favour of lane filtering
  • 75 per cent of people in favour of removing restrictions on where a ride must put their hands and feet
  • more than 70 per cent of people in favour of expanding helmet standards.

Mr Emerson said the huge response rate is indicative of the growing popularity of recreational motorcyclists with latest statistics showing 186,193 motorbikes were registered at 31 May this year compared with 178,789 motorbikes as at 31 May 2013.

Responses will now undergo an evaluation period to help with decision making on the road rules.

Transport and Main Roads will also consult with the New South Wales Roads and Maritime Services on the results of their trial conducted on lane filtering which led to amended legislation.