Light Rail – From Nowhere To  Nowhere

Light Rail – From Nowhere To Nowhere

19791f19_train-wreckAny major infrastructure investment into a region such as the Light Rail Project on the Gold Coast should be welcomed. Whilst it is a great positive to see such investment into public transport on the Gold Coast, the success of the project will rest with its financial viability. Patronage will dictate this. Patronage will be directly related to its usefulness, efficiency and its route.

ADC’s concerns for the project lie with the route of the light rail. These concerns are not because it goes through Southport or Surfers Paradise, or what road it crosses or follows. These concerns are about where it starts and finishes. Whilst Broadbeach and Griffith University are worthy inclusions for the light rail route, they are not good enough start and finish points to a first class public transport corridor. The light rail needs to be connected at both ends back to the heavy rail network otherwise the project faces potential viability failure. The suggested bus links between light rail and heavy rail can only be a temporary measure because these links will take time reducing the ease and efficiency residents and visitors will experience.

i) The Griffith University Station needs to be connected to the Helensvale Heavy Rail Station. Helensvale Rail Station is only 5km from Griffith University and would connect Southport, Surfers Paradise and Broadbeach to Brisbane. The patronage impact of such a connection is clear as this would effectively connect the Gold Coast to Brisbane and another international airport.
ii) Broadbeach Station needs to be connected to Robina Heavy Rail Station which is a 7km connection. This will mean that when the heavy rail is extended from Varsity to Coolangatta, that the Gold Coast will have a proper public transport System linking its own International Airport to the City.
ADC considers that the coming Commonwealth Games is the opportunity to fund these necessary rail extensions. If no other legacy is left by the Games other than an effective world class public transport system in Australia’s 6th largest city, then that would be a good outcome.

ADC calls on all tiers of Government and business to make this happen.

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