Inner Northern Coalition Newsletter No. 1 July 1998

Committed to the preservation of the livability of Brisbane’s Inner City Suburbs.

Herston Kelvin Grove Residents Action Group, People For Paddington, Bowen Hills Residents Association, Petrie Terrace Residents Association, Spring Hill Residents Association, New Ways Not Freeways, Queensland Conservation Council

Contacts: Richard Nielsen, 74 Garrick Tce Herston, Q, 4006, Ph: (07) 3252 2884, Fax: (07) 32571609, Dick Copeman 40 Glenrosa Rd, Red Hill, Q, 4059, Ph: (07) 3369 7594, James Whelan, PO Box 12046 Elizabeth St Brisbane 4002, Ph: (07) 3221 0188


This is the first newsletter of the Inner Northern Coalition, and is going out mainly to those people who attended the Coalition’s public meeting at the Golf Club at Victoria Park on the evening of the 4th June.

A steering group derived principally from local residents groups and calling itself the Inner Northern Coalition has had two meetings since the meeting at Victoria Park Golf Club. The next meeting of this group is scheduled for Thursday the 6th August, at 7.30 pm at 8 Petrie Tce, opposite the Hog’s Breathe CafÈ.

Many thanks to all those who were able to attend the meeting at the Golf Club. It was a very successful night from the point of view of the organisers. We felt the issues were fully canvassed, and the depth and degree of support for the protest against the proposed roads showed clearly the inadequacies of the consultative meetings that had been held previously, and greatly encouraged the organisers. Over three hundred dollars were donated on the occasion, and this money will be used to keep the campaign going.

Responses to the Survey. On the night of the meeting people were asked to complete a survey. There were a total of 117 surveys completed, and the responses were as follows:

Going by the responses to the last two items in this survey, the opposition in the community to the proposed roads is very strong.

The route for the Bypass which is the preferred option was due to be publicly announced in July, but has been deferred by Council until early August, with the chosen ‘preferred option’ for a route and the draft impact assessment to be released at the same time. The delay has added fuel to the speculation surrounding the bypass such as whether or not a proposal to tunnel under Breakfast Creek will be one outcome. But of most importance was the realisation that the Lord Mayor has been strongly promoting the Bypass concept, and that from his point of view, and subsequently from Council’s point of view, this project is to go ahead.

IT IS OF GRAVE CONCERN TO RESIDENTS THAT POLITICAL SUPPORT FOR THE BYPASS IS SO STRONG WHILE THE ENVIRONMENTAL AND TRANSPORT IMPACTS OF THE PROPOSED ROAD HAVE NOT YET BEEN ASSESSED.

In addition to the question of just where the Bypass and the Busway are to go, is the question of Who will Pay for them. The State government has given no guarantee of support for the Bypass, and while within Labor Jim Elder had expressed his support, he has been replace by the new Minister for Transport, Steve Bredhauer, whose sympathies can be expected to be with the bush, rather than with building unwanted freeways in the city. The real fear is the possibility that the Lord Mayor, who appears more set than ever on seeing the Bypass built, will fund it in the form of a loan. Under a scheme called DBFO, short for ‘Design, Build, Finance and Operate’, a contractor could build the Freeway and the Brisbane City Council pay for it at the rate of so much per user over the next twenty years. We are obtaining under Freedom of Information legislation Council documents relating to the Bypass in order to check whether this is an option that is under serious consideration.

Land Use Planning proposal. A trenchant criticism of the Brisbane City Council with respect to their roadway proposals is that their studies have been devoid of any methodology relating to land use planning. Such studies develop the comparative economics of transport options to get the best livability, and there has been no trace of this approach in the Council’s freeway planning. Rather it has been singularly focused on how and where to get a bypass freeway and a busway built, rather than should we. One of our members, Paul McCarthy, is looking into employing this approach as a critique of the approach the Council has taken. Hopefully people saw the article by Brian Williams in the Courier Mail on the 8th July, referring to a study of the transport systems in 31 cities, and concluding that public transport, not road transport, reaped the greatest economic benefit.

Next Action - a proposed media event. When the Brisbane City Council releases its preferred route option, probably very soon, we plan to have an immediate media event to demonstrate just how much parkland the Bypass will resume - with white line markings in Victoria Park. Momentum is gaining as people learn about this road and the

impacts it will have on our communities. The organising committee will be planning further actions and invite your involvement. Give us a call.

To help spread the word, we will be doing another mailout prior to that second event, but we would also like to have available a rapid response telephone tree. If you are able and willing to be part of a rapid response group, please complete and return the form below.

What can you do?

If you want to take immediate action, write to Premier Peter Beattie and Transport Minister Steve Bredhauer c/- State Parliament and to Councillors Maureen Hayes, David Hinchliffe and Jim Soorley c/- Brisbane City Council, expressing your dismay at these proposals. In addition keep an eye out for when the preferred route option is released for public comment. Once that happens it really is time to get busy with phone calls and letters. It must be remembered that the next Council election is less than 19 months away, and if the Bypass and Busway do go ahead, it will be a most unpopular decision in and about the inner city which will bear the brunt of the increased road traffic impact, with its noise, pollution, and loss of amenity.

Hold your breath… The proposed Bypass and Busway will add an estimated 15 tonnes of air pollution each day in our suburbs – that’s a total of 5 500 extra tonnes of air pollution each year, including 44 tonnes of air toxics benzene, toluene, and xylene. The health effects associated with these pollutants are eyes, nose and throat irritation, bronchitis, lowered immunity, lung and heart damage, cancer, leukemia, tiredness, muscle weakness, headache, dizziness, nausea, confusion, poor coordination, and shortened lifespan. It has recently been estimated that as many as 250 people in South East Qld prematurely die each year as a result of air pollution.

 

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Please complete the following and return it to "NO BYPASS" c/- Queensland Conservation Council

PO Box 12046 Elizabeth St PO Brisbane 4002 fax 3229 9772 qccqld@powerup.com.au

Name: ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Address: …………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Telephone: ………………………………………………………………………………………………….