Wildlife Corridors Not Transport Corridors

1 October 2021

Community opposition to the proposed Caloundra Transport Corridor Upgrade is growing as Sunshine Coast residents become aware of the scale of the proposed road and its environmental impact.

The 1.6 km Caloundra Transport Corridor Upgrade (CTCU) is aimed at improving connectivity between Caloundra’s CBD and Omrah Avenue to Nicklin Way, north of the Caloundra Road roundabout, but community and environmental groups believe it comes with significant social and environmental impacts.

‘We hope many of our members will contact our local politicians and the Sunshine Coast Council officers and CTCU team to express their concerns about this road project before the end of October,’ states Jude Crighton from Wildlife Queensland’s Sunshine Coast Branch. ‘This is a massive road that is proposed to run from Nicklin Way across the southern part of the park, and it will undoubtedly damage the natural values of Ben Bennett Bushland Park, impacting areas of mature vegetation, including lowland rainforest and wet heath and adversely affecting the resident wildlife.’

Caloundra Community Expresses Concerns

Members of the nearby Blue Care and Bolton Clark/RSL Aged care are also wary of loss of connection to the park, and disruption and damage to the RSL memorial garden. The road upgrade will require the resumption of 20 properties on Third Ave and Oval Ave and would bisect Caloundra’s quiet, residential and small business community and impact Bicentennial Park before it reaches Omrah Ave.

A community group, Value Caloundra Community, has been formed to lobby the council, politicians, and the project team to reduce the scale of the proposed development and lessen the environmental and social impacts. Value Caloundra Community group proposes that a 2-lane road would help reduce congestion at the Caloundra Road roundabout without severing the connections between the north and south of Caloundra.
‘While Wildlife Queensland’s principal concerns are with wildlife and habitat,’ Crighton adds, ‘we support their campaign because we feel this project prioritises the needs of vehicle users over those interested in recreational and natural values and divorces the local community from much-needed green space with high environmental value. If we must have new corridors, they should be wildlife corridors that link up additional green space, not further fragment it.’

Raise Your Voice

Wildlife Queensland’s Sunshine Coast Branch urges members and concerned residents to sign the community-led ePetition and be vocal about challenging the proposal during the community consultation period.
‘Concerned residents and conservationists can sign up to receive updates from the project team and council, and we encourage them to email the team with any questions and concerns before the end of October,’ instructs Crighton.
More information can also be found on the Sunshine Coast Council website. You can sign up to receive updates from the project team and council or contact local councillors Terry Landsberg at terry.landsberg@sunshinecoast.qld.gov.au and Jason Hunt MP at Caloundra@parliament.qld.gov.au

Written by Wildlifeqld