The Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR) has announced that it has scrapped much of the North South Transport Corridor, after receiving feedback from Toowoomba residents.
After receiving more than 4,000 responses and submissions through the three-month community consultation phase for the Toowoomba North South Transport Corridor, the Department of Transport and Main Roads has listened to the feedback of local residents and will now work with Toowoomba Regional Council to further investigate some of the alternate solutions that were suggested by the community.
The only section that will proceed to corridor protection is the small Charlton Bypass in the industrial area which proved to be uncontroversial after some refinements to reflect land use changes and community feedback in the area.
As part of the planning and consultation process, TMR has engaged with key stakeholders, Toowoomba Regional Council, elected representatives, industry, property owners along the proposed corridor, residents living just outside the corridor, first nation representatives and the greater Toowoomba community.
While the community feedback received shows there is positive support for an overall solution to address expected future growth, feedback has been clear that this needs to balance against concerns raised by some community members in relation to some aspects of the project.
The Queensland Government said that it remains committed to ensuring that personal, public and commercial transport in Toowoomba is managed effectively in the long-term by ensuring that residents and businesses are supported by the right infrastructure. Forecasts show Toowoomba is expected to grow by 76,000 to 200,000 people by 2046 with significant new community development projects, including new housing, approved for development.
Queensland Minister for Transport and Main Roads, Mark Bailey, said that the Queensland Government listens to its community and is extremely grateful to everyone that has provided feedback, detailed submissions or even just shared their story.
“On critical, large projects such as the North South Transport Corridor, it’s important that the community has a say – that’s why we do community consultation – so that we can change and pivot to reflect the needs of the community,” Mr Bailey said.
“Now that consultation has closed, TMR will work with Toowoomba Regional Council to identify alternate transport solutions that maximise the use of existing road infrastructure.
“Toowoomba is growing and that is a great thing for the community because it means jobs and prosperity.
“I want to thank everyone who took the time to prepare submissions, meet with the project team and provide general feedback about the proposed transport corridor.”