Light rail planning in major Coast suburb
THE State Government is preparing the light rail corridor through Palm Beach by ensuring new developments are set further back from the Gold Coast Highway.
More than 280 residents who packed a function room for a Town Hall meeting at the City Plan on Tuesday were told the council gets instructions from the Government on preserving the coastal transport corridor.
Anti-tram protest leader Karen Rowles grilled planning committee chair Cameron Caldwell at end the meeting at the Currumbin RSL.
The pair clashed first when Ms Rowles claimed light rail will bring massive high-rise within 600mm of people's fence lines and council "persecuted" her and her family.
"You told me I had no idea what I was doing," she said. "I know you are doing something now five years later, but that is too late for me.I have high-density high-rise 1.5m from my fence line."
Cr Caldwell said: "It's pretty harsh to blame me personally. Given that as Councillor (Daphne) McDonald said at the outset, that I was the one to put forward changes to reflect what I think we should do around (traffic changes at) Jefferson Lane."
Ms Rowles later asked whether land resumptions had already occurred in Palm Beach for the trams.
"Well, look not that I'm aware of, I don't know, not that I'm aware of any," Cr Caldwell said.
Ms Rowles suggested Cr Caldwell should visit the corner of Third Avenue and Gold Coast Highway where the RSL unit block built a few years ago had been "pushed back more than other homes".
"That is the land resumptions for the light rail," she said.
But Cr Caldwell said it was not a land resumption similar the service station site at Burleigh Heads for light rail stage 3A.
"So slightly different technical issue. So the State Government as we expect they will have with the petrol station at Burleigh, that's a formal resumption process."
But any developments on the highway through Palm Beach trigger a State referral issue, he added.
"So yes, in some situations, they have conditioned that they be set back further from the road to protect the road corridor," he said.
Asked again if it was protecting the light rail corridor, Cr Caldwell replied "yes".
Other residents said it was "nonsensical" why public transport was not being built where the population was rather than building a corridor forcing urban renewal and high density.
"Yeah, good comment. I mean I accept what you are saying," he replied.
"There's obviously a huge population of people that live in the coastal strip. Look, you move the corridor further to the west, the impact will be somewhere. That seems to be the school of thought tonight from what I've heard, (that residents want to) move it further (west)."