South East Queensland’s Mayors have joined forces to call for urgent action on key transport and liveability projects in time for the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympics Games.
Launching the Let’s Get Moving! campaign in Brisbane last week, the Council of Mayors South East Queensland (COMSEQ) said there was only a small window of time to begin major projects and have them completed in time for the Games.
COMSEQ Chair and Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner says the Let’s Get Moving! campaign will highlight the pressing need to get started on planning the world’s greatest sporting event.
“The Mayors of South East Queensland put our state on this journey to hosting 2032 Games because they recognised it was a unique opportunity to get all levels of government working together to deliver for our region,” Cr Schrinner says.
“Now the Games are locked in, we need to start developing a detailed plan on what investment and infrastructure we will need to ensure the Games deliver an economic and social dividend for all residents.
“That’s what our Let’s Get Moving! campaign is all about, starting the conversation about what’s required to not only deliver the best ever Games but what’s needed to ensure we protect our region’s incredible lifestyle.
“Things like cleaning up our rivers and waterways, creating new greenspace and delivering better transport connections between venues can be achieved so they deliver benefits before, during and after the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympics Games.”
Moreton Bay Regional Council Mayor Peter Flannery says the Games might be in 2023, but South East Queensland cannot wait 10 years for infrastructure to be built.
“We saw with Sydney, and just about every other games since, that infrastructure needs to be fast-tracked and delivered well ahead of any growth. That’s why we need to start planning and building infrastructure now,” he says.
“For Moreton Bay, that means getting the state and federal governments to put a second Bruce Highway on the priority list. The Bruce Highway already struggles with peak hour traffic on any given day.
“Combine The Games with the 70,000 people expected to call Caboolture West home in coming years, and we need to get real commitments from the different levels of government now - not just more money for planning.”
Cr Flannery says the Redcliffe Peninsula Line and The Mill at Moreton Bay were examples of what is possible when federal and state representatives have the drive to deliver outcomes for the region.
“All South East (Queensland) Mayors have been clear: Let’s Get Moving on infrastructure projects for our region before that small window of time closes.”
Redlands Mayor Karen Williams says when COMSEQ started the bidding process for the 2032 Olympics, it was with the clear goal of putting a deadline on building the roads, bridges and rail needed to support the region into the future.
“This whole exercise was always about building a better-connected region, and about protecting and growing our way of life,” Cr Williams says.
“We need to invest in our transport and environment projects across South East Queensland – not for the Games but in time for the Games.
“Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympics Games will be a truly regional Games and so we need this investment to spread across the region and beyond to ensure our communities can get where they need to go safer and faster.”
Toowoomba Region Mayor Paul Antonio says many of the elements needed for a good Games experience will be delivered through the SEQ City Deal, and he is urging the state and federal governments to sign on as soon as possible.
“The Foundation City Deal being offered is a good starting point for us to begin that work. There are certainly some more projects that Mayors and Councillors would like to see included, but this is a framework for all three levels of government to work together to build further confidence and certainty for the region,” Cr Antonio says.
“On behalf of all my COMSEQ colleagues, I urge the other two levels of Government to sign up to the deal, even if we need to keep talking to make it bigger and better.
“The eyes of the world will be on us in 2032. Our roads and regional transport systems need to be ready. And although a decade seems like a long time, it’s actually a short period to agree on priorities, sequence investment decisions and complete major transport projects.
“We are out of time for talking. It’s time to start the hard work.”
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