Michael McGreevy’s article comparing light rail to ‘bus rapid transit’ attracted thousands of Sunshine Coast readers and was timely given our region is soon to weigh up its future transport options. Some took to their keyboards to contribute to our Letters to the Editor.
Moving with the times: buses v light rail
I totally agree that we should upgrade the buses and run them on dedicated roadways, instead of installing expensive light rail, which would take years to build.
I lived in Sydney during the light rail installation and some shops were shut for years.
Maybe, we should get battery buses or electric buses.
However, I understand people like the look and feel of light rail carriages as they look like a tram.
Maybe we need new buses designed to look like light rail as light rail carriages are easier to get on and off.
PAUL KIRKWOOD, Minyama
Michael McGreevy’s article on the advantages and HUGE savings afforded by an electric bus network compared to controversial light rail is proof positive that Sunshine Coast Council must reconsider its seeming commitment to light rail.
Simply the lack of disruption during construction, the significant cost savings and the flexibility of the network make the choice of electric buses a no brainer.
BRIAN COYLE, Buderim
Mr McGreevy seems very well informed on these transport systems, I would think our money would be well spent seeking reports from such a source.
GARY RYAN, Caloundra
Perhaps before they start looking at rapid transport they should look at the existing system.
Are you aware that passengers arriving at the Sunshine Coast Airport who wish to travel by public transport must have a Go card? At the moment, TransLink is not accepting cash or cards for payment to travel.
As there is no outlet to purchase a Go card at the airport, or on the buses, passengers from interstate and soon New Zealand have to plead with the drivers to carry them at no cost.
This has to rectified as our reputation for a tourist destination will suffer. Surely an outlet at the airport to purchase these cards is a must. Bring on the Olympics!
The other issue is that there is only one public bus to Maroochydore and one to Noosa every hour. This must be increased as we get more flights on our new runway.
As a long-time resident of the Sunshine Coast, I object to the idea of light rail, which is totally unnecessary and would be an environmental disaster.
Who on earth would have dreamt this up? As mentioned previously, electric buses would do a better job.
If light rail went ahead, it would be the end of our beautiful Sunshine Coast forever.
We can all shape future of our transport
Queensland’s world leading response to the COVID-19 pandemic has not only saved thousands of lives but has played a major role in Queensland becoming the most attractive place to be in the nation.
Eighty-eight per cent of interstate migration at the moment is people moving from other states and territories to the sunshine state. That is an unprecedented number.
What does that mean for the Sunshine Coast?
It means that Queensland’s third largest city can expect to get its fair share of that new migration, on top of the substantial number it’s already receiving.
This will put enormous pressure on the Sunshine Coast’s current transport system.
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That’s why the Palaszczuk Labor Government has co-funded a $15 million business case 50/50 with the Sunshine Coast Council to present options for a future Mass Transit System.
Despite the doomsday predictions and lazy thinking of the ‘oppose everything and ignore reality brigade’ like veteran LNP MP Jarrod Bleijie, doing nothing is not an option.
Doing nothing will see the Sunshine Coast inevitably and literally grind to a halt as private car growth turns the region into one giant car park, costing everyone their lifestyle, and, for many people, their job and future.
So what is to be done?
Soon, Council will be asking the community to have its say on options that will be presented in the Mass Transit Study.
I encourage Sunshine Coast residents to get involved in terms of thinking about and sharing their views on what kind of a place they want their community to be in 10 and 20 years.
I think it’s fair to say there are very few people out there who want the Sunshine Coast to start looking like Los Angeles, with wider and wider motorways and larger traffic jams due to limited or minimal public transport options.
Some local commentators appear to have made up their minds already about what they don’t want, presumably for their own vested interests, as there is still no firm transport proposal before them to oppose.
Despite having no vision or plan of his own for the Sunshine Coast, LNP heavy weight Jarrod Bleijie has been quick to undermine the public consultation process before it has even started.
It is truly tiny thinking and I’m confident Sunshine Coast residents will ignore the petty politicking and roll their sleeves up to get involved in planning the future of their city.
So where are we in the process?
The public has a great opportunity to get involved in council’s consultation over the next couple of months and contribute ideas about how they think the Sunshine Coast’s transport system needs to evolve.
Now is the time for the community to look forward and plan a vision for the Sunshine Coast’s transport future together.
You can find out more about the Sunshine Coast Mass Transit Project and the upcoming consultation at https://www.sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au/Council/Planning-and-Projects/Major-Regional-Projects/Sunshine-Coast-Mass-Transit-Project
MARK BAILEY, Minister for Transport and Main Roads
Funding key to relieving ED pressure
The most logical solution to the over-demand on the Sunshine Coast Hospital is to:
- Re-fund Noosa Hospital so that it can be returned to the largely public hospital that it was designed to be, ie 65% public and 35% private;
- Increase beds and services at Nambour Hospital, so that once again it can serve the people of Noosa Shire, and the northern end of the Sunshine Coast;
- Re-fund Gympie Hospital to increase its capacity to properly serve people of Cooloola Shire.
JOY RINGROSE, Pomona
Over-promising and under-delivering on vaccine
Remember when Prime Minister Scott Morrison said we were at the front of the queue for the COVID vaccine and all those who want to be vaccinated will be done by October?
Not only will the vaccine save lives, jobs and businesses will be saved as life and the economy can open up. Lockdowns, like the recent one in Brisbane, cost the economy billions. If the doctor and nurses who worked with COVID patients been vaccinated the lockdown may not have happened.
Healthcare workers, quarantine workers, aged care workers and the aged in care homes were to be top priority. So far only 14 percent of aged care workers have had their first jab and only around a third of residents. Many workers have been told to go to their GP for the follow-up jab. They are caring for the most vulnerable in our community.
Mr Morrison over-promised and is under-delivering the vaccine rollout. Many people are losing trust in his government and questioning why we are getting the AstraZenica vaccine and its efficiency.
The prime minister has been caught out blaming the European Union for blocking supply which it has been strenuously denied. It is time he was honest and factual with his announcements.
There are too many unanswered questions about the shambolic rollout. Mr Morrison needs to be up-front, admit his government’s failures and fix them. The pandemic is not over.
ROBYN DEANE, Bli Bli
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