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Good news!!! Let's build this thing!

Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Minister for Infrastructure
The Honourable Anna Bligh
Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Airport Link and Northern Busway get the green light

29 MAY 2007

Joint Statement


Two of Queensland’s biggest transport projects are set to go ahead with the Queensland Government approving their impact statements.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Infrastructure, Anna Bligh said comprehensive assessments on the impact of the north Brisbane projects — the $3 billion Airport Link underground toll road and the $728 million Northern Busway (Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) to Kedron) — had cleared their way forward.

“This was a vital hurdle for these projects to cross — and I am delighted both did so as they will bring enormous, long-term benefits to Brisbane,” Ms Bligh said.

“We can now focus on selecting a consortium to start construction next year.”

Airport Link is a mainly underground toll road that will connect the North-South Bypass Tunnel, Inner City Bypass and local road network at Bowen Hills to the northern arterials of Gympie and Stafford Roads at Kedron and Sandgate Road and the East-West Arterial in the north-east.

It is scheduled to open in 2012 and will be Brisbane’s second toll road tunnel, following on from the North-South Bypass Tunnel, currently under construction.

The Northern Busway, when completed, will connect the Inner Northern Busway at Herston to Bracken Ridge via Windsor, Lutwyche, Kedron, Chermside and Aspley. The Windsor to Kedron section of the busway will be jointly delivered with Airport Link to maximise benefits and minimise construction impacts.

The Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for Airport Link and the Concept Design and Impact Management Plan (CDIMP) for the Northern Busway (RCH to Kedron) were developed over 18 months of planning, detailed investigations and extensive community consultation, and were displayed for public comment late last year.

An Airport Link EIS supplementary report was prepared in response to approximately 300 written submissions on the EIS, raising more than 2000 individual matters ranging from concerns over construction disruption to increased traffic on connecting roads.

Both the EIS and the supplementary report were assessed by the Coordinator-General who prepared an EIS evaluation report that recommended Airport Link proceed, subject to a number of strict conditions.

These included the development of environmental management plans that addressed community concerns relating to construction impacts such as noise and dust, as well as safety and traffic management plans to safeguard access around work sites, especially for students.



The successful tenderer will also be required to develop solutions to minimise the impact of ventilation outlets and construction impacts on Kedron State High and Wooloowin State schools.

“The government will not allow the safety of students and staff to be compromised.”

Ms Bligh said the consultation process allowed the public to be properly informed of — and have their say on — how construction and operation of both projects might affect them.

“As part of this process Education Minister Rod Welford and Member for Stafford Stirling Hinchliffe and I met with local school representatives last week and heard their concerns.

“Extensive input from the community was vital in shaping these projects,” she said.

Ms Bligh said the owners of properties directly affected by the Airport Link and Northern Busway projects would receive fair and proper compensation.

“A number of properties have already been bought from those people who needed to move on while the project was being assessed.

“Now that the projects have been approved to proceed, the project team will approach all affected surface property owners and offer to purchase their properties.

“This provides certainty to those people whose properties are directly required for the project.”

Aside from transport advantages, the projects have other community benefits including rehabilitation of Kedron Brook, beautifying and landscaping Sandgate and Gympie Roads, enhancing Kalinga Park, creating new pedestrian and cycle paths across Kedron Brook and building recreational facilities in Mann Park overlooking Enoggera Creek.

Brisbane Lord Mayor Campbell Newman welcomed the approval of the EIS and CDIMP.

“This was a crucial step in allowing these two projects to become a reality,” he said.

“I am confident both Airport Link and the Northern Busway will be of great benefit to Brisbane’s motorists and bus patrons,” said the Lord Mayor.

Mr Lucas said the Management Plan had drawn a lot of public interest.

”More than 160 written submissions were received on the draft CDIMP from organisations, individuals and government agencies,” Mr Lucas said.

“As a result, the final Plan sets out a range of requirements including the development of environmental management plans that address community concerns relating to impacts such as noise, dust, safety and heritage values.”

Approval of the EIS and CDIMP means the projects can progress to the delivery phase, with tenders expected to be called for Airport Link and the Windsor to Kedron section of the Northern Busway next month (June).

The RCH to Windsor section of the Northern Busway will be built separately.

Ms Bligh said that Airport Link and the Northern Busway are two of the largest infrastructure projects planned in the first phase of the South East Queensland Infrastructure Plan and Program.

”This is an exciting time for infrastructure projects in South East Queensland..

“I am really looking forward to seeing both these projects come to fruition as they are a vital part of our comprehensive infrastructure plan to meet Brisbane’s current and future transport needs.”

Media contact: Deputy Premier’s Office 3224 6900
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Sorry, left article with no extra details. Here are some more details from the local thread:

The preliminary design is still pretty much staying.
The tunnel will basically connect the NSBT about 1km North of the CBD, to the East West Arterial Road near the Gateway Motorway near the Airport.

Thanks to Soulvision from here:

PHASE 2 PENDING...

SITE
Airport Link is a mainly underground toll road proposed to connect Brisbane’s northern suburbs to the Inner City Bypass and planned North-South Bypass Tunnel at Bowen Hills.

The Queensland Government and Brisbane City Council are funding a detailed feasibility study to investigate the Airport Link proposal.

The study, which began in July 2005, will be carried out in three phases and will cost an estimated $21 million, with Council contributing $5 million.

The study will help the Queensland Government and Brisbane City Council to make a decision about the future of the project.




 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
How about Melbourne's experience...or Perth's Experience?
 

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How about Melbourne's experience...or Perth's Experience?
Melbourne's experience has been outstanding. The two tunnels have done an immense amount for getting us 'on the move' and it's also interesting to note how effective the tolls have been at reducing congestion on the CityLink roads especially during peak times. Locals would testify to the fact that the only major congestion on the CityLink is as a result of non-tolled roads further along building up outside of the toll areas - such as the build up on the WestGateFwy holding up the Domain Tunnel traffic.

I just wish the government had the balls to road price all our motorways. If they were serious about congestion and carbon emissions they would take that step. I can remember when Kennett announced CityLink the greens and labor cried foul that the tolls were bad for equity and would be unfair and all that crap. Well how can they say that when it effectively puts a price on the activity they claim has such a major impact on global warming. Do I sence an apology due? Doubt we'll get it.

Even better than the Telstra Dome, the CityLink was the best private money Kennett ever spent!
 

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so will it be entirely underground from the annerley/wooloongabba NSBT entrance to the end of the airport link?

How long will that be?
 

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$728 million for a busway? Why not just spend a bit more and build a bloody railway line.

How many kilometres of rail line could you build each year with the $532 million spent each year on the Queensland fuel subsidy which encourages people to drive???
 

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Mandurah line in Perth is being built for $12 million per kilometre I believe and that is inclusive of the freeway realignments and tunnels, etc.

Therefore one might assume the busway price could also buy about 60km of railway track. The fuel subsidy would buy about 44km of railway track.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
so will it be entirely underground from the annerley/wooloongabba NSBT entrance to the end of the airport link?

How long will that be?
It is from the Bowen Hills NSBT portal to the end of the tunnel.

I think the total underground length was 5.8/5.9km.

The Busway will take the current buses of the road. If a train line was built it would have to be entirely underground due to grades, and the current buses would remain on the streets and continue to get caught up in traffic. It will also able to be easily converted to light rail. The busway, unlike a rail line, will allow local routes to run express to the city after picking up all the commuters in a particular suburb or area.
 

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For northern Brisbane i think they are doing the right thing by building the underground busway as it would be much more economical then a heavy rail system and provides for a much larger benefit.

Now comparing the underground busway to Perths heavy rail system is just ridiculous.
 

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Busways in Brisbane are extremely popular.
The southern Busway has buses pretty much every 30 seconds with most of them full.

Without a doubt the most successful modern addition to public transport in Australia.

It will be great when the Eastern Busway, Northern Busway and underground section linking the Green Bridge with the Southern Busway are finished.
 

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Mandurah line in Perth is being built for $12 million per kilometre I believe and that is inclusive of the freeway realignments and tunnels, etc.

Therefore one might assume the busway price could also buy about 60km of railway track. The fuel subsidy would buy about 44km of railway track.
Bad comparison.

the northern busway is mostly underground, being built in the middle of an old suburban area, as opposed to down a freeway median.

And, with a longer distance, the price per kilometre decreases. This is a much shorter project.
 

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Without a doubt the most successful modern addition to public transport in Australia.
I would strongly dispute this.

I'm not at all convinced about busways, they are really not any cheaper than rail to build or operate. Having bus synchronised bus and train networks are a much better option in my view as they reduces congestion on CBD roads and are more comfortable and desirable for commuters. Buses are perfect for running the suburbs but they become inefficient over longer distances and in heavier city traffic.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
^^But with lower densities you can get incredible frequencies with bus that is just unachievable with rail. This is why it has worked in Brisbane.

The busways are also designed to be able to be converted to light rail when the demand is high enough.
 

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^^ did you not understand that a busway is a totally separate road built for buses ONLY. they can't be caught in traffic.

all of our newer buses also run on CNG so they are more likely less polluting than trains as they need lots of power to operate
 
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