9.4 C
Byron Shire
May 15, 2021

Tweed tells govt to keep its old road

Latest News

Bluesfest announces October dates for 2021 festival

After two disappointing cancelations of their event, Bluesfest has announced that they will hold the 2021 festival over the...

Other News

Plans to increase building heights in Byron CBD may be shelved

Byron Council’s controversial plan to increase building height limits on a block in the centre of Byron Bay looks set to be abandoned at this week’s planning meeting.

Cringe worthy PM

Keith Duncan, Pimlico After cringing at the spectacle of Scott Morrison blatantly lying to President Biden during that virtual climate...

Filming of Byron Baes begins with no indigenous consultation

Filming of the Netflix series Byron Baes has reportedly commenced without any effort made by the show's production company – Eureka Productions – to consult with local indigenous groups or the local Council.

False impressions

Fast Buck$, Coorabell I was under the impression that, upon the mayor resigning, the deputy mayor would automatically get the...

Save Broken Head

Jan Barham, Broken Head Broken Head is precious but fragile. Again, it’s under threat and it’s urgent to act now....

Flickerfest tour returns to the Northern Rivers

Celebrating 30 years in 2021 Flickerfest is bringing its National Tour to The Regent Cinema Murwillumbah for one big film packed this weekend

Staff reporters

Just days ago it was the federal government battling the state over highway funding. Now the council has turned on them as well, refusing to have the Sexton Hill section of the old highway foisted on it.

Tweed Shire Council has refused to accept the reclassification of the old highway as a local road by the NSW government.

The NSW Department of Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) classifies arterial and sub-arterial roads within urban centres with populations over 100,000 as state and regional roads and provides funding for their maintenance.

But the RMS has informed the council that with a population of just over 90,000 the Tweed does not qualify as a major urban centre and must maintain urban arterial roads within its boundaries.

To make matters worse, the RMS has also informed council staff that the next time they will review the situation is in 2019.

Tweed mayor Barry Longland said councillors are unanimous in the view that the Tweed forms a geographically continuous urban area with the Gold Coast with a population of more than 600,000.

‘The Tweed is the largest growth area in the state and no account is being given to already-approved developments which will take us well over the 100,000 mark,’ Councillor Longland said.

‘We have funded the expansion of our own arterial road network through section 94 developer contributions but these are proving to be insufficient to the growth we need, forcing us to delay projects such as the badly needed upgrade of Kennedy Drive.

‘We are also in the situation of having to build our own highway interchanges like the one at Kirkwood Road, which makes us unique across the state.’

Aspiring Labor council candidates have also jumped into the fray, blaming Tweed state MP Geoff Provest for the stuff-up.

‘Geoff Provest has failed the Tweed. It is his government that makes these decisions and to blame bureaucrats who are responsible to his government is simply weak,’ said Labor candidate Reece Byrnes in a media release.

Fellow Tweed Labor candidate Michael Armstrong agreed and said, ‘while locals are left waiting in heavily congested traffic on local arterial roads like Kennedy Drive, Geoff Provest has ignored his responsibility to deliver for the Tweed.’

Mayor Longland was barely more complimentary, saying council representatives had so far been frustrated in their attempts at working through local state members Geoff Provest and Thomas George to obtain a meeting with the minister for roads and ports, Duncan Gay.

‘We were quite surprised to learn after the fact that the minister was in the Tweed just the other day to open the northbound Pacific Highway bypass at Sexton Hill,’ Cr Longland said.

‘We know he is aware of this issue and that we have been seeking a meeting; it’s a real shame he didn’t take the opportunity while he was here.

‘Accepting the handover of the highway at Sexton Hill would represent a substantial maintenance cost without providing any real benefit to our road network and we simply don’t have the resources to agree to this.’

But Mr Provest has belatedly thrown his effort behind the push to keep the road a state road.

‘They use the comparison between us and the central coast of NSW, where a lot of the roads adjacent to the major highway are used as major transport routes,’ he told ABC radio this morning.

‘Just across the road there’s 600,000 people. We have daily fluctuations of 50,000 people. So I believe there should be special consideration.’


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Power outage in Byron Shire

Power supply company Essential Energy says that approximately 1,780 homes and businesses were without supply this morning.

Filming of Byron Baes begins with no indigenous consultation

Filming of the Netflix series Byron Baes has reportedly commenced without any effort made by the show's production company – Eureka Productions – to consult with local indigenous groups or the local Council.

Byron Comedy Festival launched with a laugh

At a hilarious sold-out launch of the Byron Comedy Festival, Dr Karl Kruszelnicki had the entire Byron Bay Surf Club giggling last night

School Strike for Climate next Friday

Next Friday from 10am Byron Shire students will be demanding political action on the climate emergency in what they and their supporters say is our present, future and reality.