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Major road project to halve peak travel times

03 October, 2014

Acting Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner has unveiled new plans for a $115 million upgrade of the Wynnum Road Corridor at East Brisbane that is expected to cut travel times by about 50 per cent in peak periods.

Cr Schrinner said Council was working on the concept design for the Wynnum Road corridor project which would be the city’s next major infrastructure project after the Kingsford Smith Drive expansion which is expected to commence when the Legacy Way tunnel opens next year.

Stage 1 of the project would see the busy four lane stretch of Lytton Road from Latrobe Street to Canning Bridge widened to six lanes as part of Council’s commitment to reduce traffic congestion and improve safety for road users.

“Brisbane is one of the nation’s fastest growing cities so it is essential we maintain and improve our existing road assets in addition to investing in new infrastructure to ensure our city remains accessible and connected,” Cr Schrinner said.

“There is a big bottleneck in the eastern suburbs in the morning peak hour with Wynnum Road between Belmont Road and the Story Bridge ranked as the third slowest key road corridor and the adjacent Stanley Street inbound through the Gabba officially the city’s slowest corridor.

“Traffic congestion in Brisbane costs business and resident’s time and money, equating to around $1.3 billion per year, and without the right level of investment in our transport system, this could rise to $3 billion by 2020.

“Preliminary analysis by Council shows that after the completion of the project, travel times are expected to be cut by about 50 per cent in peak periods.

“The overall Wynnum Road corridor upgrade will ultimately see the stretch between Latrobe Street and Riding Road widened from four to six lanes, enhancing east-west access between catchment suburbs, commercial centres and the CBD.

“This $115 million project will deliver an additional inbound and outbound lane from Latrobe Street to Canning Bridge, increasing the road’s lane capacity by 50 per cent to cater for existing and future traffic demands along this busy corridor.”

To enable the Wynnum Road corridor project widening to occur, current investigations indicate 38 private properties will be fully acquired and seven partially acquired. These will all occur on the northern side of Lytton Road. Properties in this areas have had a ‘notice of realignment’ identified on these property titles since the 1950s.

Detailed design of Stage 1 is expected to be completed in the 2015-16 financial year, with construction expected to begin in early 2018 and be completed in 2020.

The project is being funded by the leasing of tolling rights of Legacy Way and Go Between Bridge via a 50 year agreement with Queensland Motorways. Council receives a guaranteed minimum financial benefit of $1.078 billion from the deal which is funding the $650 million upgrade of Kingsford Smith Drive and stage one of the Wynnum Road corridor project.

Cr Schrinner said as part of Stage 1 works announced early last year, Council originally envisaged widening Lytton Road from Latrobe Street to Canning Bridge to five lanes, adding a new inbound lane only.

“Following further investigations and traffic analysis Council determined a six lane option would deliver better safety outcomes and tackle congestion issues more effectively,” he said.

In addition to delivering two extra lanes, Stage 1 works will involve:
• realigning the bend at Heidelberg Street to improve safety
• increasing lane widths to improve safety
• removal and relocation of the existing Laidlaw Parade and Lytton Road intersection, with the new intersection to be signalised to provide access for local residents and a safe crossing point for pedestrians and cyclists
• closing existing connection from Laidlaw Parade to Lytton Road, with this section to become a cul-de-sac
• improving safety and traffic flow by installing a median to prevent right-turns into private properties and local side streets
• rationalising and indenting bus bays along the project area to reduce the impact on traffic flow and improve efficiency.

The 38 private properties planned for full acquisition include 17 houses, a 14-unit apartment block, four townhouses and three commercial properties.

“Council is committed to working with affected property owners throughout this process and our project team will provide information and answer any questions they may have,” he said.

“We will also be informing the wider community about the project through letters, newsletters, the project website, media and via two public information sessions which I would urge community members to attend.

“I have arranged a briefing meeting for later today with the affected local Councillors – The Gabba Ward Councillor Helen Abrahams and Morningside Ward Councillor Shayne Sutton.

“In the past Cr Sutton has been vocal on the need for this project so I look forward to her ongoing support.”

Details of the public information sessions are as follows:
• Wed 29 October, 3-7pm at Eastern Suburbs Football Club (48 Hilton Street, East Brisbane)
• Sat 1 November, 9am-12 noon, Norman Park Bowls Club (43 Norman Ave, Norman Park)
Residents can contact Council’s dedicated Wynnum Road upgrade project team by calling 1800 884 681 or emailing cityprojects@brisbane.qld.gov.au [Ends] 3 OCTOBER, 2014

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