Federal Government takes action on Caloundra and Kawana Congestion
The Federal Government has committed $5 million in the 2019 Budget toward a comprehensive business case and design work for congestion-busting improvements to the road network around Caloundra and Kawana following a campaign by Federal Member for Fisher Andrew Wallace.
Mr Wallace said that the $5 million would be a major step forward in beating Caloundra and Kawana’s worsening traffic.
“Everyone knows where the problems are. You can see them for yourself every morning at intersections like the Nicklin Way Roundabout and the Kawana Link Way Roundabout on Caloundra Road. Experts have told me that what we need now is a comprehensive Network Planning Study to identify what projects would make the biggest difference right across the local network and then do the detailed design and approvals work required to get those projects shovel ready.” Mr Wallace said.
“That’s what the Caloundra Road Network Planning Study will deliver.”
The comprehensive study will consider options to improve access to Caloundra and Kawana overall, including Caloundra’s central business district, to support economic development, improve road safety and reduce travel times. It will feature conceptual development and detailed design work for road layouts for key transport links in the Southern and Central Sunshine Coast. These are likely to include the Caloundra Road/Nicklin Way/East West Link to Bells Creek Arterial, and the Kawana Arterial link between Kawana Forest and Sunshine Coast Motorway.
“For too long we have seen only talk and band aid solutions from the State Labor Government. This design work will now tell us once and for all what we need to build, how to build it and what it’s going to cost. It is the comprehensive plan we need to get Caloundra and Kawana moving.” he said.
This funding will provide a 50% contribution to the full cost of a ‘Link’ study, which will also include the environmental impact assessments, approvals and provisional costings needed to get the identified projects ready for construction.
“The congested roads around Caloundra and Kawana are a State Government responsibility, but for too long they have been ignored by the Queensland Labor Government. The situation is only going to get worse, and last year I decided that enough is enough. I advocated strongly in Canberra for help from the Federal Government to make a difference to this growing problem for Sunshine Coast locals, despite the State Government’s inaction.”
“I am grateful to the Deputy Prime Minister for listening and for coming through with this funding. It is now up to Minister Bailey and the Queensland State Labor Government to step up and provide the remaining $5 million so that we can get stop all the talking and finally start moving forward toward a Caloundra and Kawana road network that works for everyone.” Mr Wallace said.
A major tourist area on the Sunshine Coast, the roads around Caloundra and Kawana are already experiencing high volumes of traffic at peak times. More than 50,000 people are projected to move into the area as the Aura development is completed while at present no major upgrades to the area’s road network are in the advanced planning stages.