5 December, 2023

Residents rally over Bruce Hwy alternative

Elimbah and Moodlu residents are scrambling for answers after Transport and Main Roads revealed the state government’s preferred Stage 4 Bruce Highway Alternative proposal just weeks from the Christmas break.

Residents rally over Bruce Hwy alternative - feature photo

Town hall meetings, petitions and small group sessions with TMR are being organised as residents seek to fully understand the potential impact of the proposal ahead of a January 22 deadline for submissions.

Glass House MP, Andrew Powell, said the timing of the release was poor, given the Christmas break.

“There’s no good time to have done this, but surely three weeks out from Christmas is appallingly bad timing,” Mr Powell said.

Moreton Bay Councillor Tony Latter said he was blindsided by the lack of communication, adding he had contacted the CEO to raise his concerns.

“The process over all stages of BHWA has been appalling and the timing of this community consultation is another example,” he said.

“I do urge everyone to engage with the consultation, even if you are not directly affected. What we saw in Stage 2, is after the consultation the alignment changed and was finalised to an alignment they hadn’t consulted on.”

Fears of potential property resumptions were top of a long list of concerns by residents potentially impacted by two alternative routes for the proposed highway.

A TMR spokesperson did not respond to concerns around the timing of the proposal, but said the department “acknowledges property impacts are a sensitive and unavoidable part of this planning” and that construction was “many years away” and there is no funding available to progress detailed planning, design or construction.

The spokesperson said that no property impacts for Stage 4 can be confirmed at this stage of planning.

“Identifying and protecting the future motorway corridor provides certainty and limits future development which could lead to greater impacts on residents,” he said.

“TMR is committed to minimising property impacts wherever possible and will engage with potentially impacted property owners before a corridor is protected.”

A Facebook page – Objection to North Brisbane Bruce Highway Western Alternative Stage 4 – has already gained nearly 600 followers.

The group currently has a petition open stating that TMR has not engaged in appropriate consultation and seeks the end of all planning, while members are organising corflutes to amplify their concerns.

“Both options … will have significant impacts on the town of Elimbah, without addressing the Bruce Highway congestion issue, moving the current choke point up to Beerburrum,” the petition states.

Additionally a town hall meeting is planned for Wednesday December 13 for those opposed to the proposal.

There are community sessions on December 9 and 12 as well as a town hall meeting on December 13.

“The Stage 4 study area contains established communities, areas of rural living, important agricultural land, state forest, national park, and the Elimbah Potential Future Growth Area (PFGA),” TMR states in the proposal.

The Stage 4 corridor continues from Stage 1 at the D’Aguilar Highway, Moodlu.

The corridor options follow a common alignment through Moodlu, crossing Old Gympie Road north of Alcock Road.

TMR stated that “where possible, this section will closely follow the existing power easement”.

“East of Old Gympie Road two viable corridor options are shown on the map – Option 1 is to the west of the North Coast rail line and Elimbah township, and Option 2 is to the east.

“Local connectivity will be maintained via overpasses.”


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