A question of time

By JADE BILOWOL

HAVE you ever been stuck in a traffic bottleneck at Tugun that has delayed your for up to an hour or more? If you answered yes, Gold Coast Environment and Hin- terland Council (GECKO) anti- Tugun bypass campaigner Lois Levy, who has labelled the present traffic situation at Tugun "a moderate problem", would not believe you. "I am amazed at the claim in the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) that traffic through Tugun 'results in de- lays of up to an hour or more' - this is simply not true," Ms Levy said. Ms Levy said the C4 route would destroy a "biological goldmine" to "only save five minutes of travelling time". "At $60 million per kilo- metre it is an exorbitantly ex- pensive short-term solution to a moderate problem," Ms Levy said. "My reading of the EIS has strengthened my conviction that this road should not be built and that the community

should be clamouring to have the area declared a national park." And yet after calling the situation a "moderate prob- lem" she then acknowledged "traffic congestion". "The traffic congestion could easily be fixed in the short term with under and over passes and in the long term with the requirement that the interstate trucks use the Mt Lindsay Highway, which will take them out of our coastal zone," Ms Levy said. "I believe the community has been brainwashed into be- lieving that the C4 route was the only viable route and that the problems with this route have been deliberately under- estimated year after year." McPherson MP Margaret May said the traffic situation was far from moderate, and said extended delays were evi- dent particularly during peak hour traffic, with an hour wait not uncommon during Easter, Christmas and other holiday breaks. "I personally have missed

a plane while I have been there in traffic," Ms May said. "It is irresponsible of them to say it does not need to be built. "Southern Gold Coast resi- dents have waited too long for this road and they need to be given a break from the interstate traffic." Ms Levy said scientists involved in many of the studies had pub- licly stated that the frog un- derpasses and artificial breed- ing ponds and fencing would not work, leading to the ex- tinction of these populations. She said while the EIS stated the untested extraction and re-injection of groundwa- ter to keep the tunnel in the ground and treatment of acid sulfate soils with lime were crucial to maintaining the habitat of species, the mea- sures could fail in their aims. o?What do you think? Do you think the C4 route would only save you five minutes? Email your thoughts to gcmail@tweed- news.com.au or send a letter to The Mail, PO Box 6336, Tweed Heads South 2486.



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