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Letters to the editor: waterpark plans, foreshore revamp, trail project and more

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New building doubles city centre’s residential capacity

The Maroochydore city centre will soon be home to about 300 more residents, after the opening of a two-tower development. The Corso Residential Apartments, by More

Group calls for mass changes at camping hotspot

A group of government, tourism and environment representatives has called for widespread changes to improve management of a booming camping destination. The Teewah and Cooloola More

New boardwalk opens along Coastal Pathway

A 160m section of beachfront boardwalk has opened to the public after nine months of construction. The Caloundra Headland boardwalk, near Kings Beach, has replaced More

Boy, 11, dies after collision between bike and bus

An 11-year-old boy has died following a bus crash in Buderim this afternoon. Preliminary inquiries indicate a bus was travelling along Jingellic Drive near Karawatha More

Ultimate field trip inspires students to consider further study

Two Sunshine Coast Year 12 students have seen where tertiary education can take them during the field trip of their lives, thanks to the More

Glamping retreat and century-old homestead for sale

A 20-hectare property with glamping sites and a 100-year-old homestead has hit the market. Kanimbia estate, at 27 Innalls Road at Obi Obi, has attracted 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.

Before the council approves this waterpark, the question has to be asked, where is the water to come from for the 16 waterslides?

Laurence Jones, Parrearra

Once again the destruction of nature is a priority to secure our safety. Ironic, isn’t it?

We are also destroying huge tracts of beautiful remnant rainforest, wildlife and birdlife in North Queensland to ‘save’ the planet. Where are all the Queenslanders to protest this wanton destruction?

Phil Broad, Nambour 

How come council can do what it wants with any type of tree, whether it is a problem or not, but when you and I want to deal with a problem tree, we have all the trouble in the world. We have all these hoops and hurdles to jump through, but to the council, no problem.

Rudy Formigoni

Great to hear that the Nambour to Coolum Trail is well on track.

How about another for us southerners, say from Maleny to Caloundra, via Landsborough and/or Beerwah (or both)? There’s still plenty of available land along the possible routes, which would take walkers and cyclists through some pretty attractive countryside, with spectacular views. And there’s even coffee stops along the way.

Paul Prociv, Mount Mellum

The Sunshine Coast would have flourished under the guidance of Ashley Robinson OAM.

Just take a look at how Alex Surf Club has flourished over the last two decades. Enjoy your retirement Ashley. May it only last four years. We want you back contesting the mayoral position in 2028.

Tom Fitzpatrick, Buderim

It is a well-known fact that Ashley Robinson was certainly good enough to be elected to the position of mayor of the Sunshine Coast Council. He is very honest and reliable, and has a history of being associated with sports, local associations and businesses.

Being a resident of the Sunshine Coast for over 50 years and unsuccessfully standing for council three times, I can confirm that a majority of Sunny Coast residents have a lack of interest in local politics, despite it being the closest government to the people where their policies impact their everyday lives.

Laurence Jones, Parrearra

It appears these flights on Jetstar will depart from Maroochydore at 6am. As it is an international flight I assume it will mean a 3am book-in? Really? The return flights out of Auckland are also ridiculous.

Why aren’t Air New Zealand doing their seasonal flights year round? They do at least leave and return at an acceptable time.

To the letter about direct flights to Queenstown or Christchurch – these are operated by Jetstar from Coolangatta.

J. Hesse, Pelican Waters

Ed’s note: The Maroochydore to Auckland flights will depart at 8am.

The one fact involved in the ongoing saga of the Sunshine Coast rail project to Maroochydore has been the result of ongoing delays in starting the project.

Costs rise over time as can be expected. The much more difficult challenges are created by all forms of development such as services, roads, housing and road traffic restrictions due to heavy equipment and material supply issues. The longer the delay, the greater the challenges built in and near the rail corridor.

The project would be more convincing if the preliminary works had been completed already, such as environmental impacts and geological surveys, including for the tunnel and bridging across the wetlands and floodgates.

But seriously, is this creating further reasons for not completing the project? Or reasons to get on with completion to Maroochydore CBD by 2032, which is a lot closer now than it was.

Sunshine Coast Council could contribute by publicising its plans for the bus-rail interchange station in the CBD.

Michael Yeates, Golden Beach and Brisbane

There is something very incorrect with the estimates for the DSCR (Direct Sunshine Coast Rail).

$5.4 billion for just Beerwah to Caloundra? If you look at the Australian Government’s ‘A profile of high-speed railways’ it states that dedicated high-speed rail has an upfront cost of between $16 million and $110 million per kilometre depending on location. Now, that is for a new dedicated standard gauge 4’8.5″ track exclusive for high-speed trains operating at speeds from 250-350kmh.

The line to Caloundra is QR narrow gauge 3’6″ and the Premier is quoted as saying this will be for “high-speed trains”. That is incorrect, as is most of the twaddle regarding this DSCR railway. How on earth the estimate can be $5.4 billion is beyond belief. As taxpayers, we need an audit as to how that figure is reached and also how to Maroochydore it would be a staggering $12 billion and take decades to build.

Let us look at a few other global railway projects. The 422km standard-gauge railway from the Chinese border to Vientiane, the capital of Laos, cost $US5.965 billion, included 75 tunnels and 167 bridges, and was completed in five years. The Germans are building 2000km of true high-speed rail in Egypt for $US23 billion and the Morocco high-speed railway network was $US10 billion to build. So, how can the 13km Beerwah to Caloundra rail line possibly be $5.4 billion when the railway corridor is already in place and does not have to be purchased?

With the DSCR line there is now talk of a 1km-plus tunnel under Little Mountain. Why, when modern trains with basic adhesion can handle quite steep gradients? Or we should do as they did in Bangkok and build the Skyrail railway over the top of the roadway to bypass Little Mountain?

Since the 1980s, millions and millions of dollars have been put into “feasibility studies” for this railway but we have never seen a result of any study. I am beginning to think that the Queensland Government does not have the expertise to build this railway and is simply putting obstacles in the way so it does not have to build the DSCR.

Trains were originally going to be operating to Maroochydore by 2001 and that will soon be nearly a quarter of a century ago.

Ken Coulter, Ilkley

  • Democratic duties

We are authors of not only our tomorrows but for generations to follow.

Through our democracy, we have the opportunity and entitlement to write the script for the future through the ballot box.

However, the ballot box is losing its allure.

The voter turnout of 89.82 per cent in the last federal election was the lowest in modern history, falling below 90 per cent for the first time since 1922, before the introduction of compulsory voting.

Worryingly, swags of young people are disengaging from the democratic process.

Two surveys revealed more than 40 per cent of young voters do not consider democracy preferable to any other form of government.

Of course, many of the alternatives can be seen in tyranny and anarchy rampant in other countries.

While they distrust our traditional form of politics, reassuringly the young still retain a sense of civic mindedness.

The rise in distrust of politics is reinforced by increased distrust of sections of the media involved in character assassination by waiting to trap the unwary with ‘gotcha’ headlines.

Thankfully, our local media have avoided this trap in the recent local government elections.

If we want to reinforce democracy, the ball is at our feet to take the lead as mature citizens by examining policies carefully for our own future and that of some of the younger generation opting out of participating in the process.

In reinforcing the democratic process, candidates and the media should focus on policies rather than personalities.

Under compulsory voting, there is a risk that the vote of uninvolved ‘pilot light electors’ will increasingly outweigh those of switched-on voters – then we’ll all be in hot water.

Our test as responsible citizens and voters will arrive in the coming democratic Queensland election where we have the electoral right to be authors of tomorrow.

Garry Reynolds, Peregian Springs

  • Petitions process

At the moment Sunshine Coast Council needs written petitions on paper with a signature of 10 voters on each copy. Ten separate copies of petitions with a signature on each.

Online petitions would allow hundreds or thousands of voters to sign the petition by signing online. We could even end up with binding citizen-initiated referenda so that we the voters could get our council to do what we want.

Perhaps our council could tell us why is hiding petitions from the people.

Tony Magrathea, Dicky Beach

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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