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Articles: Brisbane road tunnels

Started by ozbob, January 22, 2010, 06:03:58 AM

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#Metro

QuoteWhy is it that any ill concieved road tunnel is suggested/planned then constructed in a very short time with little or no opposition but the mere mention of a new rail line or rail tunnel takes years with many studies/reports followed by more feasibility studies and reports only then, in some cases, to be postponed or shelved???

It seems that if you want to build a rail line, no houses can be bulldozed. Ever.
I'm not a TMR. Negative people... have a problem for every solution. Posts are commentary and are not necessarily endorsed by RAIL Back on Track or its members.

ozbob

From the Brisbanetimes click here!

Northern Link tunnel toll 'similar' to Clem7

QuoteNorthern Link tunnel toll 'similar' to Clem7
TONY MOORE
May 15, 2010 - 3:00AM

The toll for Brisbane's Northern Link tunnel would likely be similar to the Clem7's $4.20 - despite the latter's poor patronage uptake, Lord Mayor Campbell Newman said this week.

Northern Link, from the Toowong Roundabout to the Inner City Bypass, is expected to be operational by 2014.

But the actual toll would not be decided until the successful bidder is chosen by Brisbane City Council in September, Cr Newman said.

"The proposed toll is around that of the Clem7 without the discount, but that will be confirmed until we know what the bids are in these proposals today and we seen the final business case from council," Cr Newman said.

The Clem7 tunnel runs 4.8 kilometres and has a 6.8 kilometre tollway. Northern Link has a tunnel of 4.9 kilometres and a tollway of about seven kilometres.

Clem7 has had a slow take-up from Brisbane's commuters, although 27,000 vehicles used last Friday, the highest since the tunnel opened.

The Federal Government allocated $50 million in this financial year to the Northern Link tunnel, but has promised $500 million, with $400 million expected in the 2015 financial year.

Bids from the three short-listed firms - Northern Direct, Transcity and a joint venture partnership between Leighton, Baulderstone and Razel - were received on Thursday.

Northern Direct included Bouygues Travaux Publics, Laing O'Rourke and Transfield Services.

Bouygues Travaux is the French company building the Go Between Bridge project.

The Transcity consortium combined international tunnel construction expertise from Spanish engineering firm Acciona and Italian engineering firm Ghella, with local construction firm BMD.

The Leighton joint venture partnership included Leighton Contractors Pty Limited, Baulderstone Pty Ltd and Razel.

Work is expected to start in December and be finished in 2014.

Queensland's Co-ordinator General Colin Jensen approved the project, with a number of conditions, three weeks ago.

Council's Opposition Leader Shayne Sutton said Brisbane City Council would be hard pressed to fund the project, while Cr Newman says BCC has a strong business case for the project.
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ozbob

From the Courier Mail click here!

Major Brisbane roads clogged with traffic since opening of Clem7 tunnel

Quote
Major Brisbane roads clogged with traffic since opening of Clem7 tunnel

    * Ursula Heger
    * From: The Courier-Mail
    * May 17, 2010 6:38AM

SEVERAL of Brisbane's largest arterials have become increasingly choked since the $3 billion Clem7 tunnel opened to traffic two months ago

Data released by Brisbane City Council shows while there were large reductions in traffic on the Story Bridge, Ipswich Rd and the William Jolly Bridge, congestion on some major roads to the north and south of the tunnel has worsened.


Newmarket Rd traffic increased by 9per cent, to almost 48,000 cars a day after the Clem7 opened, while Kelvin Grove Rd jumped by 2500 cars a day. Wynnum Rd  a Clem7 feeder road  in Brisbane's south increased by 2500 cars from May 2009 to March 2010.


Lord Mayor Campbell Newman said despite Clem7's poor take-up, travel times for motorists had still improved as a result of the tunnel.

"Our traffic data shows that vehicles' movements on the Story Bridge have reduced by around 19,000 vehicles a day,'' he said.

"Other surface roads to benefit from the opening of the Clem7 include the Pacific Motorway north of the tunnel which is down by over 15,000 vehicles a day and Ipswich Rd, which is now carrying around 10,000 less vehicles a day.

"Surface road users are also experiencing great time savings on their trips, with some routes recording almost 40 per cent less travel time,'' he said.

Deputy Mayor Graham Quirk said the council was investigating ways to improve traffic flows.

Traffic using the cross-river tunnel has improved since the introductory toll was first imposed, increasing to about 27,000 cars a day this month.

But volumes are still considerably less than predicted by  RiverCity Motorways and Brisbane City Council.

Earlier this month the consortium behind the Clem7 tunnel, RiverCity Motorways, extended the introductory toll period until June 30.

RACQ traffic and safety executive manager John Wikman urged the council to do more to reduce congestion.

"We saw a lot of money invested into one part of the road network  the tunnel ... what could we have achieved if that money had been invested in the whole surface network,'' he asked.

Mr Wikman said that the traffic on Lutwyche Rd had worsened in peak hour after a lane was removed for Airport Link work.
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ozbob

Half baked projects, have long term consequences ...
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Jon Bryant

QIC should withdraw its funding for Northern Link immediately and the Lord Mayor should resign as his TransApex "congestion fixing" plan is nothing short of a complete and utter failure.    >:(   >:(  >:(  >:(    >:(

Dean Quick

Hate to say it Mr Newman but "WE TOLD YOU SO". Anyone with half a brain knows that building more roads and road tunnels is not the answer. Hopefully these figures, which prove that clem 7 is a white elephant, will kill off this unnecessary and costly new tunnel.

ozbob

From the Brisbanetimes click here!

Kingsford Smith snarls to continue

QuoteKingsford Smith snarls to continue
TONY MOORE
May 25, 2010 - 4:00PM

Brisbane's Airport link tunnel will take fewer vehicles than expected from Kingsford Smith Drive, Brisbane councillors were told this morning.

The tunnel, linking the Inner City Bypass to Brisbane Airport, will only divert about five per cent of the 70,000 vehicles expected on Kingsford Smith Drive by 2026.

The news ups the political ante over the city's key riverside connection to the airport.

Previously Brisbane City Council traffic projections predicted Airport Link would draw between 15 and 20 per cent of traffic away from Kingsford Smith Drive.

But Transport Infrastructure manager Alan Evans this morning reported that recent modelling had substantially changed the traffic situation.

"It was expected to be around 20 per cent," Mr Evans told the meeting.

"Now it's down to five per cent," he said.

The news comes as some Brisbane councillors got their first look at the most recent modelling of "double decker " tunnels, fixed "pedestrian and cycling viaducts" in the river, attempts to widen Kingsford Smith Drive to six lanes and 25-metre "expressway" extensions into the river which could provide an extra three lanes.

Deputy Mayor Cr Graham Quirk said 25 different designs had now been considered by planners.

This morning Cr Quirk revealed poor soil under the strip of Kingsford Smith Drive near the Breakfast Creek Hotel would prevent a tunnel being built under the roadway.

Cr Quirk said one proposal for the double-decker tunnels was for them to be built off-site and then effectively buried beneath the river edge, but not under Kingsford Smith Drive itself.

Mr Evans said this option also allowed the 60,000 vehicles to continue to use Kingsford Smith Drive.

Under this proposal, the road level traffic set-up would remain, but two levels of two-lane tunnel would be built underground beside Kingsford Smith Drive and not directly under the road.

Cr Quirk said it was still too early to say if the off-river tunnel option was the best solution for Kingsford Smith Drive, when pressed by Labor's Council Opposition Leader, Cr Shayne Sutton.

"This is going to be a very long journey," Cr Quirk said.

Other options include:

- a six-lane widening of Kingsford Smith Drive, which has problems with river silt;

- a separate three lane widening or "viaduct" on piles over the river; or

- a fixed pedestrian and cycling "viaduct", which is not floating, but would not provide extra lanes.

brisbanetimes.com.au revealed in February that Lord Mayor Campbell Newman was looking again at a tunnel under Kingsford Smith Drive because of the traffic growth from the nearby Hamilton Northshore development and the airport.

Brisbane City Council has set aside $21 million for introducing six-lane sections of the Kingsford Smith Drive closer to the Gateway Motorway and 30 per cent through the project.

It has lodged a submission for more than $600 million to the Federal Government for funds to revitalise Kingsford Smith Drive.

::) :o
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Golliwog

Why is it that they also think road problems need to be solved with road solutions? Have they done any PT studies into what it would take to accomodate this traffic in other ways?
There is no silver bullet... but there is silver buckshot.
Never argue with an idiot. They'll drag you down to their level and beat you with experience.

Jon Bryant

Yes they have but of course any study starts with the No.1 Assumption that PT can never attract more than 10-15% and thus the only solutin for the other 80-90%% is ...wait for it...dadaa..A ROAD!!!!!

ozbob

From the Courier Mail click here!

Airport Link won't reduce congestion on Kingsford Smith Drive, admits council

Quote
Airport Link won't reduce congestion on Kingsford Smith Drive, admits council

    * by Ursula Heger
    * From: The Courier-Mail
    * May 25, 2010 11:00PM

THE $5.6 billion Airport Link project will do little to reduce congestion on one of the city's most choked arterial routes, Brisbane City Council says.

Deputy Mayor Graham Quirk said  the tunnel would divert just 5 per cent of traffic off Kingsford Smith Drive by 2026 despite earlier predictions of up to 15 per cent.

Lord Mayor Campbell Newman was elected in 2004 on a platform that included the building of a series of tunnels including Airport Link. The project was subsequently taken over by the State Government.

Cr Quirk said the latest modelling by the council found traffic increases from development in the area would lead to 70,000 cars using the road daily by 2026, turning it into a virtual car park unless more lanes were introduced. Currently the average speed during peak hour is just 20km/h.

"There has been a hard assessment made of the number of vehicles expected," he said.

"There has been a closer assessment of all the movements (of traffic) and that is what has driven the need for additional capacity."

He said growth at Australia Trade Coast, coupled with the Northshore Hamilton development, was adding to traffic on Kingsford Smith Drive.

The council yesterday put forward four options to fix the problematic road, including a viaduct built over the water to add an extra three traffic lanes and a pedestrian lane.

Currently the road takes an average of 58,000 cars a day.

One proposed option, a multi-level roadway, could cost up to $650 million for a 2km viaduct between Newstead and Hamilton.

A report compiled for council last year did not include the multi-level roadway, considering 32 other options for improving traffic flow on the road.

Cr Quirk said the multi-level, or double-decker option, had to be added into the options to provide the extra capacity needed for the road.

The report came down in a draft form in the middle of last year and set out, among the 32 options, what it considered the eight key ones were, Cr Quirk said.

"Since that time there has been a lot more work done and the double-decker options has come on to the table.

"We are still in the embryo stages, all we know is that something has to happen."

A spokeswoman for City North Infrastructure, the state body overseeing the Airport Link work, said

: "Average Weekday Traffic on Kingsford Smith Drive (was) predicted to decrease by 11 per cent in 2012 and 6 per cent in 2026 when compared to without Airport link forecasts."
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Jon Bryant

Article ignores the old Elephant in the Room again.  Airport Lnk, Clem 7 etc ate not decreasing congestion.  Also there is no way the growth in the areas mentioned has increased trips by the capacity provided by Airport Link, etc.  When oh when will the Road Blinks come off the Lord Mayor and his Deputy Dog. 

I wonder of the 32 options looked at which if any were PT solutions.  I suspect none.  If there were any I am sure they were discounted because they can only attract 10-15% of trips.  False assumptions will always justify false outcomes.   

#Metro

#171
Wilbur Smith Plan 1965 strikes again!
What are these "experts" doing?! Yesterday I read that new modelling for a KSD would cut traffic congestion by 5% from 20%.

QuoteTHE $5.6 billion Airport Link project will do little to reduce congestion on one of the city's most choked arterial routes, Brisbane City Council says.
Surely the cost-benefit ratio is 1 or below now. And talk of multideck buried tunnels... :-w
This tunnel- will this new KSD tunnel be a toll tunnel and publicly funded courtesy of Brisbane ratepayers like NorthLink?
Quote

Cr Quirk said council also doubted the State Government's plans to extend the rail line to the Trade Coast area would remove significant numbers of vehicles from Kingsford Smith Drive.

"All of our numbers show that it will just not be enough," Cr Quirk said.

"We will just have to have the significant upgrade of Kingsford Smith Drive."

Council has predicted an extra 22,000 vehicles a day will use Kingsford Smith Drive, jumping from 58,000 to over 70,000 by 2026.

I can't believe this, I just can't!  ???

http://www.brisbanetimes.com.au/queensland/arterial-road-to-car-park-within-decade-20100525-waz8.html
I'm not a TMR. Negative people... have a problem for every solution. Posts are commentary and are not necessarily endorsed by RAIL Back on Track or its members.

Mozz

70,000 cars by 2026 - not if there isn't any petrol by then it won't

paulg

I think an upgrade is probably necessary in the longer term, but I don't think another tunnel is warranted. I would support a six lane road, partly on viaduct over the river (4 lanes general traffic and 2 transit/bus lanes), with a wide cycle and pedestrian viaduct also out over the river.

Cheers, Paul

Jon Bryant

Quote from: paulg on May 26, 2010, 09:44:08 AM
I think an upgrade is probably necessary in the longer term, but I don't think another tunnel is warranted. I would support a six lane road, partly on viaduct over the river (4 lanes general traffic and 2 transit/bus lanes), with a wide cycle and pedestrian viaduct also out over the river.

Cheers, Paul

... and thus encourage more trips from the same population and the return if congestion.  What then? Double deck the whole lot??  ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!!!!! BUILDING MORE ROADS WILL ONLY MAKE THE PROBLEM WORSE.  IT IS A WASTE OF MY HARD EARNED TAXES

somebody

Quote from: paulg on May 26, 2010, 09:44:08 AM
I think an upgrade is probably necessary in the longer term, but I don't think another tunnel is warranted. I would support a six lane road, partly on viaduct over the river (4 lanes general traffic and 2 transit/bus lanes), with a wide cycle and pedestrian viaduct also out over the river.

Cheers, Paul
But before we even think about such a thing, shouldn't there be a 300 BUZ service?  In fact, there's really not too many other routes on this road so this very expensive piece of infrastructure is hard to justify.

#Metro

I think this is an example of "Freeway Creep".

See, a lot of these cars will be using KSD as a viaduct to the Gateway Bridge, which, as we know, has just been duplicated with $1.8 billion to become a 12-lane super-freeway which will eventually carry a truly astronomical load of traffic. No amount of upgrades, short of demolishing everything and placing 12 lanes of freeway where KSD IMHO will be enough (no, I do not advocate this, just pointing out how futile it all seems to be). To be fair, I am glad there is a pedestrian and bicycle lane on the new gateway bridge.

Remember, this is part of a "balanced" transport plan created by well qualified "experts".
I'm sure they have good intentions. The results are however, are not.
I'm not a TMR. Negative people... have a problem for every solution. Posts are commentary and are not necessarily endorsed by RAIL Back on Track or its members.

ozbob

From the Courier Mail click here!

Airport Link properties pledged to developers without residents' knowledge

QuoteAirport Link properties pledged to developers without residents' knowledge

    * From: The Courier-Mail
    * May 31, 2010 12:00AM

HOMES earmarked for destruction to make way for Airport Link were already pledged to the developers by the State Government months before residents had a chance to object to the resumptions.

The Kalinga Wooloowin Residents Association claims a June 2008 project document showed the state had decided to hand over private land to BrisConnections, the company building the Airport Link project in Brisbane, before owners knew their homes were under threat.

The document details a schedule of resumptions and, in one example, the state said it expected to deliver property in Kent Rd, Wooloowin, by October 2009.

But it would be another five months – November 2008 – before residents received resumption notices.

"When did the Government get the power to give away land it didn't own?" said Greg Davis, secretary of the association.

Airport Link is a $5.6 billion mostly underground road project due to be completed in 2012, connecting the city with the airport and northern arterial roads.

More than 300 properties are being taken for the project.

Brian Nally, a residents' association spokesman, said there was the "small matter of natural justice".

"The state had in effect predetermined the outcome of any objection, by signing up to leasing the land to BrisConn," he said.

"They would have suffered commercial penalties if they reneged on the leases, so they therefore had no option but to take the land," he said.

But Infrastructure Minister Stirling Hinchliffe denied land was given away prematurely.

Property owners were being given due process and the state was following the law, he said.

Residents are also concerned the tunnel could damage their homes and yards because of subsidence from groundwater issues.

The association also objected to the decisions being made by Shane McDowall, chairman of City North Infrastructure, which is overseeing the project.

CNI has the stated goal of "delivering Airport Link".

Residents made 22 objections to the resumptions and all were unsuccessful.

Mr Hinchliffe said due process was given in each case.

"If any of these objections had been successful, the state could have modified the project's alignment," he said.

The state considers the resumptions closed, but the association is taking legal advice on whether the matter can be pursued with a higher authority.

BrisConnections told investors the tunnel posed several construction and design risks, including groundwater issues.
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somebody

Quote
Quote"When did the Government get the power to give away land it didn't own?" said Greg Davis, secretary of the association.
Umm, perhaps when the Constitution was written?  Didn't they see "The Castle"?

mufreight

Bit endemic with this government giving awat or selling off property and assets that private citizens or the general public own without either consultation or adequate compensation.
Seem to recall there was a bloke called Stalin tried the same methodology but look what happened to him,maybe history will repeat itself here?

#Metro

QuoteBit endemic with this government giving awat or selling off property and assets that private citizens or the general public own without either consultation or adequate compensation.

There would have to be consultation. Its not like someone wakes up to find a for sale sign put outside their property.
What would more consultation reveal that wasn't already known? Its obvious that people did not want their houses resumed, but consultation is unlikely to change that fact.

Without resumptions, we would not have roads, busways, Brisbane Airport (an entire suburb was wiped off the map for that) and all sorts of things. And even the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Its not possible to devise a situation where there are only winners and no losers.
I'm not a TMR. Negative people... have a problem for every solution. Posts are commentary and are not necessarily endorsed by RAIL Back on Track or its members.

Jon Bryant

TT makes a good point.  If the property is not resumed for rail it will certainly be resumed for a road.  And we all know which one solves our traffic congestion and which one simply encourages the need to resume even more proprties.  This point is never made when people protest a new rail line. 

#Metro

#182
QuoteTT makes a good point.  If the property is not resumed for rail it will certainly be resumed for a road.  And we all know which one solves our traffic congestion and which one simply encourages the need to resume even more properties.  This point is never made when people protest a new rail line.

Total transport = active transport + roads, therefore
Roads = total transport - active transport

If it is not done by rail, bicycle, walking, bus etc then it is done by car.

PS: That SG corridor is a perfect freeway alignment. A straight-out of-the-textbook example. Not advocating for it, just FYI.
Mark my words... :-X
I'm not a TMR. Negative people... have a problem for every solution. Posts are commentary and are not necessarily endorsed by RAIL Back on Track or its members.

somebody

Quote from: tramtrain on May 31, 2010, 13:32:22 PM
PS: That SG corridor is a perfect freeway alignment. A straight-out of-the-textbook example. Not advocating for it, just FYI.
Mark my words... :-X
I think you are being a little paranoid here.

There's little reason for such a freeway, you can use the Logan, Gateway and Pacific Motorways to make the same commute.  Perhaps from Algester area there might be some demand, but not enough really.  Unless they are going to build a motorway from the Acacia Ridge area to the city.

#Metro

QuoteThere's little reason for such a freeway, you can use the Logan, Gateway and Pacific Motorways to make the same commute.  Perhaps from Algester area there might be some demand, but not enough really.  Unless they are going to build a motorway from the Acacia Ridge area to the city.

If Clem 7 is anything to go by, low patronage is no obstacle!

If there is demand for rail, you can be sure there is demand from cars.
If 20% of people in this area travel by PT, then there are the other 80% who use cars.
And not to mention the flagstone/Yarrabilla etc etc places. History shows that a freeway/arterial road connects before the rail line ever does.

Just ask the people of Kippa Ring or Springfield.  >:D
I'm not a TMR. Negative people... have a problem for every solution. Posts are commentary and are not necessarily endorsed by RAIL Back on Track or its members.

ozbob

From the Brisbanetimes click here!

Clem7 traffic rises - slightly

QuoteClem7 traffic rises - slightly
TONY MOORE
May 31, 2010

The number of vehicles using the Clem7 tunnel on weekdays increased by 3.4 per cent in May, from an average of 22,967 to 23,746 each day.

However the overall increase for the month was slower, with the average number of vehicles each day - including weekends and public holidays - increasing just 1.2 per cent, from 21,178 to 21,424.

The numbers are still well below tunnel operator RiverCity Motorway's prediction that 60,000 vehicles a day would use the toll road after the start-up period.

RiverCity Motorway CEO Flan Cleary said the steady growth in traffic numbers between Monday and Friday was encouraging.

"It is pleasing to see the number of workday trips on the Clem7 steadily increasing," Mr Cleary said.

"The Clem7 is providing genuine travel benefits for businesses, trades-people and commuters."

On weekends the number of vehicles using the toll tunnel increased by 3.8 per cent in May, up from an average of 16,577 vehicles each day to 17,203 vehicles per day.

But the fact there were more weekends in the measured period than April, meant that the average increase across the month was only 1.2 per cent.

Mr Cleary said analysis showed more than 17 minutes could be saved for a motorist wanting to get from Ipswich Road to Lutwyche Road.

"We did a travel time survey that showed it can take motorists 26 minutes to travel from Ipswich Road near our entrance, across the Story Bridge to the corner of Northey Street and Lutwyche Road," Mr Cleary said.

"In comparison, the longest time to travel between these two locations via the Clem7 was 8 minutes and 30 seconds."

He said RiverCity Motorway had received feedback from commuters that they were saving up to 15 minutes using the tunnel.

"Therefore, we remain confident that daily trips will continue to increase as more people experience the travel benefits."

Fridays is the most popular day for Clem7 users, with Mondays the least popular.

The biggest total of Clem7 commuters was Friday, May 7, when 26,968 people used the toll tunnel, up by 1280 vehicles from the biggest traffic day in April when 25,688 used the tunnel.

RiverCity Motorway said the trend towards the busiest day being Friday was mirrored on other roads.

"That is the experience on all roads, not just tunnels," a spokesman said yesterday.

In November last year brisbanetimes.com.au questioned traffic modelling of the Clem7 tunnel, pointing out there was a 50,000 variation in the number of vehicles estimated to be using the tunnel by 2016 from Maunsells and from Sinclair Knight Mertz who developed the plan for the Northern Link tunnel.

By 2016 traffic consultants Maunsells estimated 116,384 vehicles could use Clem7 each day, while the Sinclair Knight Merz Northern Link project team estimated 65,900 by 2014. increasing by 1350 per year.
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ozbob

From the Courier Mail click here!

Residents angry at Airport Link noise as companies exploit 'loophole'

Quote
Residents angry at Airport Link noise as companies exploit 'loophole'

    * by Ursula Heger
    * From: The Courier-Mail
    * June 01, 2010 11:00PM

RESIDENTS in Brisbane's inner north have accused the companies behind the $5.6 billion Airport Link project of exploiting a loophole in the conditions set down to protect those living near the work sites.

Locals say the sheds covering the project's tunnelling and spoil facilities are not properly sound-mitigated, forcing residents to put up with unnecessary levels of noise and dust as work on the project continues 24 hour a day, seven days a week.

Conditions set down by the Coordinator-General Colin Jensen stipulate: "In particular, spoil-handling facilities and tunnel shafts serving underground works should be enclosed, ventilated and acoustically-lined".

But Kalinga Wooloowin Residents' Association spokesman Brian Nally said Thiess John Holland was exploiting the use of the word "should" instead of the word "must" when it came to mitigation measures.

"Hiding behind words such as 'should' and 'must' is a clear-cut case of passing the buck," Mr Nally said.

"Airport Link is a public-private partnership where the public has no power thanks to an ineffective public service and a weak-willed Coordinator-General and Minister for Infrastructure, who are happy to expose families, shift-workers, and even the Federal Treasurer to shocking 24/7 construction noise."

Residents say the shed covering the Kedron worksite is not acoustically lined, while the Toombul shed has not been fully enclosed.

But a spokesman for Mr Jensen said under the conditions, the need for some or all of the mitigation measures depended on the specific locations of each shed, and it was not necessary to have all sheds fully enclosed, acoustically lined and ventilated.

A spokeswoman for TJH said it was not necessary to have spoil haulage sheds fully enclosed or acoustically lined if noise goals set down for the project were being met.

"Monitoring results at (a nearby property) demonstrated that the spoil-handling facilities in place at Kedron achieve the noise goals for the project, with the loudest noises recorded being not from the worksite, but from private vehicles driving past and activities from local residents in the street," she said.

The complaints come after BrisConnections chief executive Ray Wilson said residents upset at round-the-clock construction work outside their homes

"didn't understand the full implications of what we're constructing".
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ozbob

From the Brisbanetimes click here!

Traffic woes could keep Clem7 toll low

QuoteTraffic woes could keep Clem7 toll low
June 2, 2010 - 10:05AM

The owner of Brisbane's Clem7 tunnel denies the company is in financial strife as it considers extending discounted tolls to boost dismal traffic flows.

Between 22,000 and 24,000 vehicles use the cross-city tunnel each day, well short of the 60,000 forecast.

Flan Cleary, chief executive of tunnel owner RiverCity Motorway, today said a 30 per cent toll discount scheduled to end on June 30 could be extended.

"We would consider that yes," he told the ABC.

"That's something we'll have a look at later in the month."

Asked if he'd consider a reduction in the permanent toll, he said: "We would look at all options."

But he added: "At the same time, we really do have to service a large level of debt so we do need certain financial returns from it."

Mr Cleary said there was no doubt traffic flows were well below what had been forecast for this time.

But he said any new toll road faced the same hurdles and it was a matter of getting more people to try it.

"I'm very disappointed with the actual traffic we've got," he said, adding RiverCity was considering new marketing campaigns and better signage to boost usage.

There was also enduring resistance among motorists to paying tolls, but he was confident that would change over time.

"We've just got to get more people to try the tunnel. The people that use it like it."

Mr Cleary urged shareholders, who paid $1 for stock now trading around five cents, to be patient, and denied the company was in financial strife.

He said the company had reserves of $180 million to buffer it against forecast versus actual usage.

"We've got substantial reserves," Mr Cleary said, adding it was two years until the company had to meet any bank covenants.

He said the company had commissioned a new traffic study to get a better handle on what traffic flows might look like over that period.

But he was confident flows would dramatically increase when the airport link was completed in 2012, linking the tunnel with major arterial routes.

"(By June 2012) we would love to have 75,000 to 80,000 vehicles using the tunnel" each day, he said.

AAP
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Dean Quick

 :-r              :-r               :-r

Jon Bryant

#189
 ...and this is the really ugly side of Toll roads.  Their whole business is focused purely on increasing traffic and car usage whilst ery planning document has a stated aim of decreasing it.  So the companies best interests are at the cost to the community.  This is why I call such companies income Black Money because it is made at someone elses expense namely our taxes through indirect costs or peoples enjoyment of their homes.  

Dean Quick

EXACTLY Jonno, well said. Unfortunately the failed transport policies of the 50's and 60's are still haunting us today.

Jon Bryant

Haunting?  I can only assume based on current transport plans/projects is that the transport policies of the 50s and 60s ARE the policies of today.  They not ghost they are alive and well.  :-t

somebody

Quote from: Jonno on June 03, 2010, 13:29:12 PM
Haunting?  I can only assume based on current transport plans/projects is that the transport policies of the 50s and 60s ARE the policies of today.  They not ghost they are alive and well.  :-t
There has been some interest in the last 10 years or so in expanding bus services.  Other than that, I agree with Jonno.

ozbob

From the Courier Mail click here!

Campbell Newman's final tunnel for East-West link could be built sooner

QuoteCampbell Newman's final tunnel for East-West link could be built sooner

    * by Ursula Heger
    * From: The Courier-Mail
    * June 09, 2010 10:32PM

THE final tunnel in Lord Mayor Campbell Newman's TransApex plan could be built sooner pending the outcome of a review into Brisbane's traffic demand.

Brisbane City Council budget documents show $1.4 million will be spent over the next two years on a review of traffic demand for the East-West Link – a proposed 6km cross-river road tunnel connecting Buranda and Toowong.

While the city's fourth tunnel project was originally slated to be built after 2026, Cr Newman said yesterday the study could result in funding for the project being brought forward.

"Timing will be assessed based on outcome of the traffic demand review," he said. "The review will inform council on the potential timing of the project, which could be brought forward if there is demand."

Cr Newman's seventh budget yesterday revealed Brisbane City Council will spend more than $1.9 billion on the TransApex Projects over the next four years, while the bridge and tunnel projects will bring in only $81 million in revenue.

The next tunnel project, Northern Link, between Toowong and Kelvin Grove, will cost $1.8 billion over four years, partly funded by a $1 billion-plus loan from the Queensland Treasury Corporation and a $500 million contribution from the Federal Government.

Council will lay out $289 million for Northern Link alone this year.

Part of the revenue stream for council for all projects will come from Clem7 operators RiverCity Motorway for traffic mitigation measures on surface roads affected by the tunnel.

Budget documents show the $328 million Go Between Bridge will earn just $8.9 million in revenue from tolls in its first year of operation,

and tolling revenue will not exceed costs of operating the bridge for at least the next four years.

Cr Newman said the revenue projections for the Go Between Bridge, due to open in July, were based on start-up traffic volumes of 12,000 vehicles per day and had not been downgraded in the wake of the Clem7's opening.

"That is the business case that we put to BCC in August 2008 . . . and we believe that it is accurate," he said.

Budget papers show the council's debt is expected to rise to $1.01 billion this year, increasing to $1.6 billion by the time Northern Link is completed in 2014.

Opposition leader Shayne Sutton said the risk to ratepayers for Northern Link was unacceptable.

"The Northern Link tunnel is not like the Clem7 where a private operator bears the tolling risk; Brisbane ratepayers are bearing that risk," she said. "It is not good enough that they could feel higher rates increases into the future if the traffic (projections) do not stack up."

The TransApex projects include the Clem7, Northern Link, the Go Between Bridge, the East-West Link and Airport Link – which has been taken over by the State Government
Half baked projects, have long term consequences ...
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Jon Bryant

When is the opposition going to highlight that the tunnels and all the road projects will only increase congestion.   That is the debate we need. 

O_128

Am i the only one who thinks that the east west link would be the perfect rail line? A stop a UQ would be a huge trip generator
"Where else but Queensland?"

ozbob

From the Courier Mail click here!

Clem7 tunnel team knew of risk

Quote
Clem7 tunnel team knew of risk

   * by Ursula Heger
   * From: The Courier-Mail
   * June 11, 2010 11:00PM

SERIOUS doubts were raised about the validity of the Clem7 tunnel's traffic projections at least four years ago.

In 2006, financial analysts Merrill Lynch warned that forecasts for traffic flows when the tunnel opened represented the project's "biggest risk", saying it was not clear-cut that drivers would choose to pay to use the road.

The analysts said they were "wary of the company's own traffic forecasts in the long term".

The company behind the tunnel, RiverCity Motorway has insisted its forecasts are sound, despite significantly lower predictions by the tunnel's original proponents, the Brisbane City Council.

But the company this week said independent consultancy firm IBIM would review its traffic forecasts and prepare new figures for the Clem7, based on current usage.

CEO Flan Cleary has said questions would be asked about the assumptions surrounding the original forecasts.

"We will have consultants (brought in) and a part of that is looking at what assumptions were made in the first model, and are they appropriate and, if not, why not," Mr Cleary said. His comments contrast with those he made in 2007, when he expressed confidence in the traffic forecasts and said the toll price set was "well within the acceptable limits for people".

Last week he said while polling done before the project opened suggested residents would be willing to pay tolls, cross-river traffic had flattened in recent years.

"The outcome (of the traffic study) was that there was a willingness to pay tolls," he said. "It appears that, obviously there are people who are not willing to pay tolls and don't want to pay them at the moment – there are always people like that but, as time goes on, people will use the road," he said.

The company is now considering whether to further extend discount tolling, keeping the price at $2.95, one way, for cars rather than raising it to the full $4.28 on June 30.

It will also consider advertising new travel time surveys and improving signage at entrances.

Financial analysts have warned that the tunnel needs to attract 75,000 vehicles a day by 2012, or risk defaulting on loans.

The Clem7 is the latest big tunnel project in Australia to flunk its traffic forecasts. Sydney's Lane Cove Tunnel and Cross City Tunnel both overestimated traffic flows. Sydney's Cross City tunnel did not meet projections and declared bankruptcy just over a year after it opened.

The Cross City Tunnel – which links Darling Harbour to Rushcutters Bay and cost more than $900 million – attracted only 30,000 cars a day when it opened in 2006, well short of the predicted 90,000 a day. In January this year, the operators of Sydney's $1.6 billion Lane Cove Tunnel went into receivership after weaker-than-expected traffic numbers.

Last month, the Clem7 saw an average of 23,700 vehicles a day, less than half of the 60,000 a day it was expected to reach within a month of opening.

Lord Mayor Campbell Newman has distanced Brisbane City Council from the Clem7 project, saying it did not put ratepayers at risk. He said BCC's projection was closer to 38,000 a day within six months of opening.
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Jon Bryant

#197
The ASX must investigate immediately.  The content of the prospect may be fraudulent in my opinion.

PS Council IS exposed because when Clem 7 goes belly up and no one will buy it as income is not covering cost then Council will have to operate.  Lord Mayor you promised to go if Your TransAoex plan did not fix congestion.  Time is up!!!!!

ozbob

From the Sunday Mail click here!

Brisbane's Clem7 tunnel linked to floods as doubts raised over Airport Link as well

QuoteBrisbane's Clem7 tunnel linked to floods as doubts raised over Airport Link as well

    * From: The Sunday Mail (Qld)
    * June 13, 2010 12:00AM

OUTDATED flood modelling and Brisbane's obsession with tunnels is posing risks for houses in low-lying areas.

Three months after Brisbane Lord Mayor Campbell Newman admitted structures forming the Clem7 tunnel had exacerbated flooding of homes, newly released documents have cast doubt over the flood modelling for the new $5.6 billion Airport Link tunnel being built by the State Government.

It comes as Cr Newman pushes forward with plans for the final tunnel in council's TransApex program - setting aside $1.4 million in its latest budget for a review of traffic demand for the proposed East-West Link cross-river toll tunnel linking Buranda and Toowong.

But council documents released to The Sunday Mail under Right to Information reveal problems with the flood modelling used to plan the Airport Link tunnels, higher than predicted flooding for the Clem7 and outdated flood levels used to control development along Breakfast Creek and Enoggera Creeks.

Council Infrastructure chairman Graham Quirk said the council had acted on the information by ordering extra flood mitigation works.

But homeowners caught in the May flooding fear the extra works have been too slow and too little to head-off another devastating flood.

The Clem7 raised flood levels by up to 8cm during heavy rainfall in May last year, leading to the removal of 11,000 tonnes of soil to prevent a repeat.

Council admitted the tunnel increased flooding a day after receiving a Right to Information request for reports on the May flood.

Ten people have approached council for compensation, of which all but two claims have been ruled out as being unrelated to the Clem7 works.

Several flood victims have accused council of playing down the impact of the Clem7 on flooding, alleging the works raised levels higher than 8cm.

Homeowner Diana Van Beek said the damage bill for her Windsor home was almost $120,000 after water flooded the lower storey.

Local councillor for the area David Hinchliffe said an independent investigation should have been held.
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ozbob

From the Courier Mail click here!

Clem7 eases surface congestion

QuoteClem7 eases surface congestion

    * Ursula Heger
    * From: The Courier-Mail
    * June 13, 2010 11:15PM

MOTORISTS avoiding the $3 billion Clem7 tunnel to save on tolls are finding their travel times slashed despite traffic in the cross-river tunnel falling almost 40,000 cars a day short of predictions.

Brisbane City Council data shows travel times between Hawthorne and East Brisbane have dropped to below 10 minutes since the Clem7 opened, while times on the choked Wynnum Rd have also improved.

Lord Mayor Campbell Newman said yesterday there had been an average saving of almost five minutes on some of Brisbane's surface roads since the tunnel opened in March.

"Before the Clem7 tunnel was built, almost half of all CBD motorists only drove through the city because there was no other option," he said.

"But now they are able to bypass it. All Brisbane motorists are experiencing the benefits."

Motorists using the tunnel saved nine minutes on morning travel times when compared to surface roads.

But despite the savings, the Clem7 tunnel has continued to fall well short of the 60,000 cars a day expected within a month of opening. So far this month, the tunnel has averaged 23,372 vehicles a day - similar to the average for May.

This comes after The Courier-Mail revealed that funding for Brisbane's fourth TransApex tunnel, the East-West Link connecting Toowong and Buranda, could be brought forward pending the outcome of a traffic review this year.

Cr Newman said major infrastructure projects such as the Clem7 were the key to alleviating Brisbane's increasing congestion.

"Traffic congestion will continue to be a problem for Brisbane motorists unless we continue to tackle it with our plan to build several more tunnels and bridges," he said.

"We've always said the Clem7 tunnel wouldn't be a silver bullet for Brisbane's congestion problems, which is why we're also delivering the Go Between Bridge, the Northern Link tunnel and $97 million of suburban road upgrades."
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