Fight is on for Sexton tunnel
By LEONIE BRANN
IMAGINE what would happen on our roads if seven sets of traffic lights are built on the Pacific Highway between Terranora Road and Tweed City shopping centre.
Now, think about how local traffic flow over Sexton Hill into South Tweed Heads and to the border, will be affected if there is only one exit and off-ramp for southbound traffic travelling between South Tweed Heads and Tugun, and only two access points for northbound traffic using the highway.
This is the reality of the Roads and Traffic Authorities' (RTA) preferred upgrade route for the traffic black spot of Sexton Hill, according to Community Highway Group member Rod Bates.
The retired officer, formerly with the Police Traffic Branch in Sydney, was one of the members of the Highway Group to launch a privately-funded booklet that explains why Option C for a road tunnel to be built below Sexton Hill, is better than the RTA-preferred route of Option B.
"If we as a community do not take the RTA to task over Option B, than that is what we will end up with," said Mr Bates, who was a member of an RTA community consultative group on the best way to improve traffic on Sexton Hill.
"Option B has been designed to provide the best carriageway for traffic on the highway...but local traffic will be totally decimated."
About 65 residents attended the meeting at South Tweed Sports Club, with them showing unanimous support for the Option C road-tunnel route, which has been rejected by the RTA, according to Highway Group member and civil engineer, Mike Allen.
"No serious evaluation of the tunnel option has been considered by the RTA," he said at the meeting.
"It would seem the RTA have already made up their minds."
Copies of the booklet were handed out at the meeting, and will be sent to local members of government, state and federal road ministers, local residents groups and motoring bodies.