Tunnels unlikely to solve Gympie Road congestion problems

The State’s peak motoring body has slammed a series of proposals for a tunnel system under Gympie Road at Chermside.

The Courier Mail reported urban design group Suburban Alliance had unveiled a design for a 1.6km tunnel under Gympie Road between Rode Road and Murphy Road. An additional concept for a 9km tunnel from Telegraph Road to Stafford Road was also presented, to connect with the existing Airportlink, Clem7 and Legacy Way systems.

RACQ spokesperson Paul Turner said tunnelling was an expensive solution to reduce congestion and other more effective projects were already in the pipeline.

“It’s unlikely either tunnel design will provide a long-term solution to congestion issues on this part of the road network. Instead, it might trigger more complexities as population and vehicle numbers rise because it’d become costly to increase its capacity. It also raises the question of whether the tunnel would be tolled, which creates another issue for motorists,” Mr Turner said.

“We need to get projects like the North West Transport Corridor off the ground because they offer a more robust solution with a range of transport benefits. Improving our active and public transport infrastructure is also important and reduces congestion by taking more cars off our roads.”

It came as the Courier Mail also reported more than 400,000 Australians had made the move from capital cities to regional areas over the past five years for better quality of life – and likely less time in traffic.

“Decentralisation from city centres like Brisbane would take pressure off transport and infrastructure, but it means governments need to review their investment plans in regional areas,” he said.

“This could benefit the south east corner and provide more time to ‘catch up’ on the projects in the pipeline, but we need to make sure we’re not pushing current problems somewhere else.”