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Background

Analysis of historical literature indicates the Sunshine Coast Regional Council (SCRC) has been working on both transport and urbanization strategies, running in parallel for many years, with the first official document entitled “A Line in the Sand” released in 2012.  Further strategy documents such as the SCRC Urban Transformations Directions Paper 2017 and the SCRC Integrated Transport Strategy 2019 make it clear over this time Council had developed a clear preference for a Light Rail system along the region’s Coastal corridor accompanied with significant population densification in the same area. 

 

The Council’s website was amended in April 2021 to recognise this fact but claims that Council, in commencing the business case process in 2018, was no longer fixated on light rail. However, documents released in 2019 and 2020 still reference light rail as the mass transit mode of transport. In particular the Preliminary Business Case Interim Findings Report (Jan 2020) which is the base document for the current Draft Options Analysis Report April 2021, contains detailed analysis ONLY on light rail accompanied with significant housing densification (medium and high rise buildings) along the corridor.

What was in the Preliminary Business Case Interim Findings Report Jan 2020

The Preliminary Business Case Details

Shaded area represents potential high-rise development 
Red Line is the Light Rail Route

PWC Preliminary Business Case Interim Findings Jan 2020
Density Quantified
PWC Preliminary Business Case Interim Findings Jan 2020

And What comes first?
Density or Light Rail?

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  • It proposed a light rail from Maroochydore to Caloundra and heavily densifying the population along where it goes.

  • Stage 1 = 13km from Maroochydore to the University Hospital

  • Stage 2  University Hospital to Caloundra

  • In the 13.6km in Stage 1, the report showed analysis based on the following:

    • Increasing the dwelling capacity in the corridor by up to 5 times 

    • Increase building heights and density 400m either side of where the Light Rail runs.

    • Increase dwellings from 11,209 now, to a capacity of up to 50,761 

    • This would increase population from 23,222 to 103,495

 

If this was to occur it would mean:

  • more cars on the road not less

  • less parking

  • greater congestion

  • more crime

  • ugly infrastructure along our beaches

  • increased traffic and tram noise

  • Loss of privacy

  • Increased multi storey apartment buildings

Light Rail was being chosen because it achieves the greatest "urban transformation" not because it is the best transport system for the community!

 

"The options assessments concluded that only the LRT option and potentially the BRT option are considered to have significant benefits in achieving the important land use criterion.  The Quality Bus Corridor option is based on bus lanes and although it performs well in terms of transport and cost, cannot achieve the full range of urban renewal benefits sought for the SCMT Project in the Sunshine Coast Urban Corridor" p 22 PWC PBC Report

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Light Rail Route

  • Stage 1 Light Rail to run from Maroochydore Town Centre to the Sunshine Coast University Hospital​

    • Segment 1 Maroochydore Rd

    • Segment 2 Aerodrome Rd

    • Segment 3 Alexandra Pde and Venning St

    • Segment 4 Mooloolaba

    • Segment 5 Mooloolaha River

    • Segment 6 Nicklin Way

    • Segment 7 Birtinya Town Centre

  • 16 proposed stops,  Propose to increase densification 400m around stops

  • Stops to be 500m to 1km apart

  • Stage 2  - light rail to run from  University Hospital to Caloundra (9km) will have 9 stops and more high-rise!

 

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PWC Preliminary Business Case Interim Findings Jan 2020