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Letters to the editor: eco-cabins scrapped, missed bus, bridge upgrade and more

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Your say: seawall plans, bus numbers and more

Do you have an opinion to share? Submit a Letter to the Editor at Sunshine Coast News via news@sunshinecoastnews.com.au. You must include your name More

Highway mayhem following crashes in both lanes

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Cheers to a new generation bringing cane back to the farm

Sugarcane is being planted on a Sunshine Coast farm for the first time in 20 years as members of a local family pioneer a More

Childcare centre proposal sparks debate over location

Councillors have debated the need for new childcare centre that would deliver an “essential service” to a burgeoning business district. A development application was submitted More

Application seeks increased number of units on vacant block

The real estate trio behind a proposed unit complex at Caloundra hopes to almost double the number of units approved for the site. About M, More

Division by division: what your suburb gets in council budget

The newly-elected Sunshine Coast Council yesterday handed down its first budget, with mayor Rosanna Natoli saying it was focused on “improving transport, roads, pathways More

Do you have an opinion to share? Submit a Letter to the Editor at Sunshine Coast News via news@sunshinecoastnews.com.au. You must include your name and suburb for accountability, credibility and transparency. Preference will be give to letters of 100 words or less.

What a crying shame that the state government has abandoned plans to build a host of cabins at Cooloola in the national park.

This is a marvellous natural area and it is a great pity that so few people have the opportunity to experience it. A walking track of 102km is a great way for people to experience nature, however few have the stamina to walk this distance and those who do will need to camp along the way. So without cabins, those attempting this walk will need to carry tents, food and cooking equipment and utensils. This is something that is going to make the track even more inaccessible to the majority.

Having walked the Milford Track in New Zealand – around half the distance of the Cooloola Track – I can attest to the wonder of experiencing nature in its rawest state. But the Milford Track is well equipped with small cabins, complete with cooking facilities, so the keen walker has somewhere comfortable and safe for their overnight stays.

Over the years, thousands of people have traversed the Milford Track, bringing millions of dollars to the area with their spending on accommodation, meals, car hire etc at the ends of the walk.

Those from Noosa who oppose the Cooloola Great Walk eco-tourism project seem very short-sighted, perhaps somewhat selfish, as they sit back in their comfortable dwellings, while at the same time denying the less fortunate members of the community the employment opportunities that will flow from the tourism dollars injected into the region. And from a tourism project that will in no way damage the environment, unlike many other tourism ventures.

Tom Swann, Currimundi

National parks are areas protected for future generations and some of the last refuges for many of Australia’s vulnerable species.

However, right now Australia’s national parks are under attack. These public lands, places of outstanding natural beauty, of immense ecological, cultural and recreational value, are being siphoned off to developers who see them as places of profit, not protection.

This is in contrast to the recent announcement of the protection of the Cooloola Great Walk (stretching from Rainbow Beach to Noosa). We applaud the state government for halting controversial plans to open a series of eco-cabins following the public backlash over the Cooloola ‘tourism’ project.

However, also recently, the state government announced it is looking for private companies to offer walking tours on Whitsunday Island, which is home to the world-famous Whitehaven Beach with its dazzling white sand and pristine water. It’s promising ‘boutique’ camp sites, which conservationists rightly argue will push out the general public and threaten the fragile ecosystem. In Australia, some private operators lease land, or use new structures built by government agencies in national parks, which they alter to suit customers paying top dollar for an exclusive walking experience. These alterations involve everything from constructing substantial building complexes, to hardening and widening tracks, to building helicopter landing pads. The results are ecological impacts, compromised wilderness values, helicopter noise impacts across tens of thousands of hectares, the closure of existing campsites for independent walkers, and areas becoming far less publicly accessible. These private developments exclude the wider public, both physically and financially.

We ask all stakeholders to note the public has made it clear that commercial development inside of national parks in unacceptable.

Andrew Stimson, Upper Coomera 

I fail to see what the big drama is about those kids missing the bus service.

They are in a safe and secure area, and the 615 is a regular service.

For the parent to equate it to Daniel Morcombe is ridiculous. I regularly use that stop and you will see kids engrossed in their phones and not paying attention. I’m not saying this is not necessarily the case this time but bus drivers are under pressure to stay on time. If they knew their bus was due (and there are electronic signs with scheduled times on it) they should have been at the front of the platform waiting.

What a waste of time and money this parent’s actions have caused, simply because his kids didn’t appear to be paying attention and getting themselves ready to catch the bus before it arrived.

Des Deighton, Coolum Beach

Mr Rankin needs to get off his high horse.

Clearly the kids in that video were mucking around at the university bus stop and not ready waiting for their bus. Maybe their dad hasn’t taught them proper public transport etiquette. If they were standing in the correct spot waiting, they wouldn’t have missed the bus.

Don’t put it back on drivers and don’t bring Daniel Morcombe into this.

Sarah, Beerwah

TMR and Translink have introduced yet even more confusion with the ridiculous idea of ‘bus stations’.

So, if buses do not stop at a bus station, why is it not just another bus stop? What defines a bus station other than by name or a silly attempt to play on the idea of a train station? And if the bus doesn’t stop unless hailed, it is really little different to an express service?

This case is a bit different to the Morcombe case but full buses have been reported going past bus stops at state schools, so the issue of safety of people at bus stops still needs to be addressed when relying on buses to stop.

Drivers not looking for passengers due to traffic conditions suggests yet another issue, namely safe bus stop locations.

So, would bus stations be expected to be even safer locations?

In this case, the least that would be expected would be for the case to be examined and for the evidence to coincide.

Michael Yeates, Brisbane and Caloundra 

More free accommodation hand-outs for mayor Natoli, whilst everyday Coasters struggle to keep a roof above their heads.

Why on earth Rosanna would accept such a gift is beyond me. She’s either made a rookie error or she is having a laugh at all of us.

You haven’t made your bed Rosanna, room service no doubt has done that for you. But you must lie in it.

Step down, before yet another scandal makes even more of a mockery of our local democracy.

Tom Fitzpatrick, Buderim 

Dear councillors, have you really thought this through?

We have lived on the Coast for 27 years and have often enjoyed a drive along the beach, and parked sometimes to enjoy looking at the water and for a walk for a little shopping. Visitors who are taken for a drive along this road think it is wonderful.

Do you realise the number of elderly who love it who will be deprived? Some can only walk a few steps. We will not be able to walk from the car park at back of shops.

Why not beautify the park already there?

Mary Wicks, Maroochydore

The thought occurred to me that the existing bridge be left in place and a new one constructed from the Stony Wharf boat ramp area.

There is an island mid-stream here that may help during construction. The finished bridge could be two lanes and such a height to facilitate boat traffic. The eastern shore here could easily be accessed for a road to be constructed back to the Sunshine Motorway, or direct to David Low Way. Both bridges could be kept open each in a one-way configuration.

Having the option to keep the existing bridge open during construction at the Stony Wharf site would also be a big plus.

Roger Benton, Bli Bli

How convenient. Another announcement with no substance behind it. Just in time for the upcoming election.

The bridge needs replacing. Council has made many requests, over many years, to the state government about this bridge and the state government has consistently said there is no funding available. However, there is money available for the ‘talkfest’ (all talk, little action).

However, I note they have covered their derrieres with a broad statement.

The Queensland Government has allocated $1.6 million for the planning phase but the statement said timeframes for detailed planning, design and construction would depend on future funding commitments and state-wide priorities.

We are being fed crumbs.

Beverley Ritchie, Bli Bli

Low-cost public transport is one way to get people out of cars and onto public transport, resulting in a reduction of congestion on our roads.

However, there is another requirement before this idea is going to work properly: frequent services. When I travelled in London, San Francisco and Sydney, I never once consulted a timetable because I knew that, regardless of the time of day, within a few minutes of arriving at the stop, a bus, train or tram would be along and my wait time would be minimal.

I commend the government for the 50-cent fare initiative but more public transport vehicles with increased frequency are needed to achieve the aim of getting people to use them.

Tom Swann, Currimundi

Do you have an opinion to share? Submit a Letter to the Editor at Sunshine Coast News via news@sunshinecoastnews.com.au. You must include your name and suburb for accountability, credibility and transparency. Preference will be give to letters of 100 words or less.

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