Cooroy planning future's big stakes
THE outcome of a "town hall” meeting in Cooroy next Tuesday could impact all planning for the Noosa hinterland settlement decades into the future.
Cooroy is the largest service town in the Noosa Shire hinterland, and is earmarked for the bulk of future population growth, given the coastal side of the shire is pretty well fully developed.
The public meeting next Tuesday, starting at 6pm in Cooroy Memorial Hall and jointly hosted by Cooroy Chamber of Commerce and Cooroy Area Residents Association, will discuss what to do about two major, at-times congested, intersections: the junction of Myall and Elm Streets at the bridge over the railway line; and the intersection of Elm St with Diamond St.
The state Department Transport and Main Roads has already prepared its preferred options to erect traffic lights at both intersections, on the basis such solutions are the cheapest and the quickest to install.
But arguably at least half the town's residents have reservations about such outcomes, and would prefer to see roundabouts installed instead.
Other options circulating include reducing traffic in the town by fast-tracking a proposed bypass, which TMR has scheduled for a very long time away.
Many residents see a solution through replacing the bridge across the railway, along with other options, such as doing nothing at all.
"Nicklin MP Marty Hunt, Noosa MP Sandy Bolton and Mayor Tony Wellington will attend the meeting,” CARA president Rod Ritchie said.
"They will talk about the feedback they have received to date - and they will also outline the political realities of state government road updates, along with traffic volumes at the intersections, cost differentials between lights and roundabouts, as well as the short and longer term solutions.
Mr Ritchie said both intersections would be discussed individually, and different outcomes were possible.
However Mr Wellington has warned that because each intersection affected the other, they should be dealt with together.
"Written questions should be submitted on the night, but there will be time for questions from the floor afterward,” Mr Ritchie said.
"Ballot papers will be available. Results will be conveyed to TMR and Noosa Council.”
Even the "quicker” traffic lights option is at least four years away, and commercial/residential developments are occurring near the intersections which could impact on traffic and access, such as one recently put forward to council, on Diamond St, only metres from the Elm/Diamond junction.