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Byron Shire
March 7, 2021

Extend train line to sports centre

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The current proposed train line to run from the new Elements Resort at Belongil to Byron Bay town seems rather short-sighted.

It will only really be servicing the privileged guests of the resort, a few residents of Sunrise Beach and people returning to their homes, tents and holiday apartments in town.

How’s this for an idea: extend the train line to go to The Farm via the sports complex and the new Byron Hospital (accessed via an artistic ‘Welcome to Byron Bay’ footbridge, competition to be announced).

We could request that the Flannery Corporation of Elements Resort, as a community-minded organisation, contribute the cost of recycling unused railway line to provide the track and the lovely crew at The Farm provide a portion of their land for car parking for commuters.

The way we see it this kills a few birds with one stone:
• Greatly reduced traffic into Byron Central. No more sitting in traffic jams.

• Byron youth will be able to travel safely to their sporting events and the beach.  Parents can drop them off at The Farm and pick up a coffee.

• The sports complex will be more accessible and used more.

• Access to the Industrial Estate

• Locals and tourists from Byron will  use it to shop and dine at The Farm and Elements Resort

• Byron Hospital is accessible from town

• Easy access to town for pedestrians (another idea, a possibility to create traffic-free zones in town).

It goes without saying that everyone wins, all residents of Byron Shire, our youth, Flannery Corporation, Byron Industrial Estate, The Farm, the currently under-utilised sports complex, all Byron businesses, tourists, Byron Shire Council (for facilitating a major improvement to our area).

A Byron Bypass will no longer be necessary and we create a fantastic community resource and eliminate our traffic problems.

Just saying…

Sally Packshaw and Christine Levy,  Mullumbimby

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  1. The railway line goes nowhere near the Farm and the new hospital! If the line got extended a few more hundred metres you could walk/cycle to the sports centre with a connecting path, and then the rail line goes on to Tyagarah not far from the blues festival site. Have shuttle buses run from Tyagarah station to the festival and take that traffic off the highway and ewingsdale rd….. the rail line is even closer walking distance to the yelgun nth Byron parklands. Just sayin!

  2. Also remembe the proposed ‘train’ is a two carriage rail motor running on a single track, not exactly a high capacity transport solution.

  3. When the cost of deaths and injuries from road accidents, road congestion, the health and environmental cost of pollution from road transport are taken into account, it would be much more cost effective for the state and federal governments to restore the whole Casino to Murwillumbah line and build the 24ks to connect it to the Queensland line at Coolangatta, for a regular commuter train service.

    It’s appalling that the second most visited region in the state, after Sydney, with huge population growth, does not have a train service and is not connected by rail to its closest city and airports.

    What we CANNOT afford is to keep building more, and larger, roads needed to keep up with the amount of traffic heading our way.

  4. A feasability study was done on restoring the Casino to Murwillumbah by well respected international consultancy firm ARUP and it was found not to be viable given the huge cost to resote the single track line that has deotriated significantly over the last 12 years. The corridor also only serves 40% (forecast to reduce) of the population in our area. The line does not serve the growth regions of Kingscliff, Pottsville etc. I’m not sure how cost effective it would be for a government to spend millions on a train service that no one will use just to keep up a number of nostalgic train supporters happy.

    There is no train at Coolongatta and the current QLD govt has no plans to extend the line from varsity lakes. Instead the are rightly focused on extending the well used GC light rail and not wasting millions on extending a line only a handful of people will use. I have commuted from Brisbane to Varsity lakes and by the time the train arrived at Varisty Lakes it was 3/4 empty and this was in peak hour!

    • The state government’s ‘study’ was $2m worth of rubbish-they wouldn’t have any idea of the real condition of the line as none of it was inspected! The transport needs 4.6m tourists didn’t rate a mention. Brilliant. It’s been demonstrated that the line can be repaired for a fraction of their mythical costs.

      Just last week my friend and I left Brisbane at the same time-she drove and I caught the packed train (they’re always packed-never seen a 3/4 empty train) to Robina. She arrived home 15mins before me. The traffic on the highway crawled all the way from Robina to Currumbin. Terrific!

      Regardless of when the Qld train line is re-built to Coolangatta, the fast growing north coast community and 4.6m tourists still need trains and a link to the airport.

    • I’m not sure why the Government would want to spend close to a billion of a pathway that would only keep a hand full of Lycra clad bike riders happy…

  5. Elements have NO intent for their train to cross Bayshore Drive. Their reluctance to move their platform 100m to the other side of the road away for residential bedroom windows puts a nail in the coffin of this train servicing any real community needs.


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