Holistic local sustainability; food, water, energy, money, people
Neither of TMR’s Overpass Options 1 or 2 is ideal for the community (TMR = Qld Transport & Main Roads). A large overpass will be unsightly, ugly and will divide the suburb. We’re looking for community support in feedback to TMR to say that a short underpass option would be a far better outcome for local residents and businesses.
Frustration at further delays are understandable given the inordinately long time it’s taken for governments to address this problematic crossing. The long years of many people repeatedly calling for a solution (code-worded ‘overpass’) was the time for a quick response. But the planning stage is not the time to rush things. We must get this right.
Max Hooper has drawn up an alternative option for a short underpass (above) which has the following advantages:
Although the current feedback session closes on April 24th, you can send your views at anytime supporting an undercutting via email to Metropolitanregion@tmr.qld.gov.au, Subject line “Boundary Road (Coopers Plains), rail level crossing”. Also, look out for e-Petitions to both Queensland TMR and Brisbane City Council coming out in the next few weeks. It will take a significant effort to convince TMR and BCC to change tack, but the team at SBSF (Southern Brisbane Suburban Forum) will be behind it. Max Hooper is putting in long hours doing the research, both technical and financial, to study the feasibility of an undercutting. When a local resident living near the site who has the civil engineering skills and the enthusiasm to come up with a better solution, he should be heard. If you like his solution as I do, he deserves your support.
If your main interest in the level crossing is as a road user, you’ll be interested in the wider connectivity issues of the crossing.
Boundary Road is a Council road and one of three arteries for heavy freight and containerized trucks crossing southern Brisbane to get from the Acacia Ridge Inland Rail terminal (see ARTC – Australian Rail Track Corporation) to the Port of Brisbane via the Gateway Motorway. The other two are the state gazetted truck route, Kessels Road, and a shorter route on Compton Road, another Council road. Both need upgrades to prevent existing congestion points. Boundary feeds into the main intersection at Sunnybank and is suitable for servicing local delivery. An undercutting would match those needs.
In my view – and Max doesn’t share this – the congested right turn from Orange Grove Road to head west on Boundary, can be alleviated by connecting Musgrave Road to Beaudesert Road – a route that languishes as a backwater due to lack of foresight. Although there are two rail lines and some flooding issues to deal with, the area is light industrial and construction of an elevated roadway would be much less disruptive than at the Boundary Road crossing. It is a connection that is inevitable and bringing it into the present would disperse traffic flow.