CANDIDATES Q&A: Challengers for the role of mayor and councillors in Rockhampton Regional Council were questioned about their priority issue for the region.
CANDIDATES Q&A: Challengers for the role of mayor and councillors in Rockhampton Regional Council were questioned about their priority issue for the region.

Candidates’ priorities to fix Rocky roads, drains

THE day has almost arrived for the 2020 Local Government Election and to assist with your decision casting a vote, the contenders for the roles of mayor and councillors in Rockhampton Regional Council were asked the following question:

What local roads, intersections, drainage or footpaths would you like to see improved?

Mayoral candidate: Chris Hooper

Mayoral Candidate Chris Hooper. Photo: Chris Ison / The Morning Bulletin
Mayoral Candidate Chris Hooper. Photo: Chris Ison / The Morning Bulletin

While a lot of councils recognise climate change or adaptation, Rocky council is missing in action (Adani).

My take is that if by using free buses families might go back to one car which frees up roads. Now if we put truck freight onto trains that frees up roads even more.

The ring road which will go under water in flood, should not be built because if you reduce cars and trucks in town there is no need.

Wide hot bitumen streets in the suburbs should be planted with shade trees and community gardens to reduce the radiated heat.

Mayoral candidate: Margaret Strelow

Mayoral candidate Margaret Strelow
Mayoral candidate Margaret Strelow

Much of council’s budget is determined by the cost to operate our services or by our asset management plans.

The asset management plans calculate how much we need to spend to keep the things we currently own (like roads, (footpaths), sewer pipes and sporting fields) in good condition and how much we need to spend every year in renewing them.

Councils report to the community on how we are going in matching these plans. We are doing very well in this regard and information is available on the State Governments DLGMP website.

It’s very important that process continues to be driven by the engineering reports.

Division 1: Sherrie Ashton

Division 1 candidate Sherrie Ashton.
Division 1 candidate Sherrie Ashton.

As the Crestwood Estate grows and more workers and young children move in, an increasingly dangerous intersection that will need either lights or a roundabout is the corner of Foulkes St and Norman Rd.

There’s need for additional footpath on Nagle Drive between Norman Road and Springfield Drv and Moores Creek Rd.

Grigg Rd at Limestone Creek also needs attention just to name a few.

I’m sure there are many more areas that will need addressing and once elected I will seek community support to identify the areas most in need and will work with council staff to understand the priorities to systematically work through the list.

Division 1: Shane Latcham

Division 1 candidate Shane Latcham.
Division 1 candidate Shane Latcham.

The Rockhampton council should develop a “10-15 years Liveable Cities Strategic Plan” like other regional councils have implemented in Queensland.

This would cover the key infrastructure such as off-street bikeways, walking paths and the joining of council attractions and parks to create a scenic loop.

In Division 1, a set of traffic lights at the intersection of Farm and Barrett Streets may allow safe access for schoolchildren, pedestrians and disabled persons in mobility vehicles to cross this very busy road. It may also solve the ongoing traffic congestion issues at the Drakes Glenmore Complex and Glenmore Shopping precinct.

Division 1: Vincent ­Robertson

Division 1 candidate Vince Robertson.
Division 1 candidate Vince Robertson.

Driving around ­Rockhampton, it is easy to see the roads and streets that need immediate attention, and those that are in good condition.

Those with serious repair problems need to be given priority.

Traffic Bottlenecks of great concern during peak periods, have been mentioned at the Feez St roundabout on Moores Creek Rd, and leaving Cascade Gardens on to Norman Road.

Although a lot of work has been done to improve drainage around Rockhampton, much more needs to be done.

Again, the areas of immediate concern need to be prioritised.

Division 2: Neil Fisher

Division 2 candidate Councillor Neil Fisher.
Division 2 candidate Councillor Neil Fisher.

Within Division 2 there are some road and intersection improvements I would like to see addressed during the next council term, like Duthie Ave and the intersection at the entrance of the Lighthouse Christian School.

There are still a number of missing links in Division 2’s pathways that I would like to see completed. I would also like to see the continuation of the Mount Archer pathway network.

I would like see the implementation of ouncil’s Minor Stormwater Program and the 22 projects that have been identified, completed during the next council term.

Division 2: Gavin Shuker

Roads are something that is always a big issue in the community. Like any issue it is how you respond to a problem being reported. If a problem is reported you must have the structure in place to quickly assess and deal with it.

Of course this includes making sure you have the employees with the tools to do this and great lines of communication.

Designated footpaths with walking and running routes is something that should be looked at as there is a large section of the community that would use these.

Division 3: Tony Williams

Division 3 candidate Cr Tony Williams
Division 3 candidate Cr Tony Williams

Rockhampton Regional Council’s civil operations department has a systematic approach to our road networks with new road construction, renewals and reactive maintenance.

Council will continue to fund projects on the Major and Minor stormwater program as budget consideration allows. With an allocation of around $3 million per year to address stormwater priority projects.

I will continue to push for increasing our footpath networks in and around schools and local neighbourhood walking circuits.

Division 4: Ellen Smith

Division 4 candidate Councillor Ellen Smith.
Division 4 candidate Councillor Ellen Smith.

Although controlled by Main Roads, Lawrie Street Gracemere is a priority road with heavy traffic congestion, that urgently needs upgrading to four lanes.

The intersection of Lawrie and Ranger Streets needs to be upgraded to traffic lights. ­­

It is a very wide intersection carrying heavy traffic both ways.

There are two ‘missing links’ in our footpath network in Gracemere, which are listed in the Works for Qld program.

Bouldercombe also needs new footpaths, being on the Burnett Highway with only a front entrance to the school, and 60km/h speed limit during school times.

Drainage works are needed in both towns to prevent house and yard flooding.

Division 5: Peter Anderson

Division 5 candidate Peter Anderson.
Division 5 candidate Peter Anderson.

With B Double access off the highway to the airport/ Ridgelands Rd, trucks/army need all lanes to turn.

Alton Downs has a few narrow intersections. There are some bridges that are costing a fortune to maintain.

There are a lot of floodways which should be replaced with culverts. Drainage around Wandal is ridiculous. We need to be cleaning and upgrading these before the next wet season.

We need to expand the rural bitumen sealing program and duplicate single lane bitumen roads. Tourist spots like the Fireclay Caverns should be bitumen.

Concrete footpath programs should be ramped up, there are too many to list that I consider urgent.

Division 5: Cherie Rutherford

Divison 5 candidate Councillor Cherie Rutherford
Divison 5 candidate Councillor Cherie Rutherford

Council’s roads and drainage programs are developed after consideration of a number of factors including; traffic volumes and usage type, number of properties impacted and severity of impact.

Each project is investigated, assessed, costed and then prioritised and a works program is presented for budget consideration.

These programs are often taken to Community Catch-ups and ratepayers meetings for community input to ensure where possible, that council’s and the community’s priorities are aligning.

This has been particularly successful in the rural area, where community feedback has seen council increase funding of floodways and increase gravel resheeting.

Council is also committed to improving the region’s footpath network.

Division 6: Drew Wickerson

Division 6 candidate Cr Drew Wickerson. Photo Contributed
Division 6 candidate Cr Drew Wickerson. Photo Contributed

Council implements an extensive and comprehensive forward works program for road works, stormwater and sewerage infrastructure.

In addition to resealing urban roads and replacing older kerb and channel, our crews maintain 500km of rural roads.

Council prioritises this schedule based on traffic volumes and systematic roughness measurement.

Lack of water during the drought created challenges to maintenance that are now being addressed.

RRC engineers have prepared a stormwater network analysis and modelling required to design new works to resolve issues.

I have actively supported ongoing works to resolve longstanding drainage issues within the main drain area that I know has a significant impact on residents.

Division 7: Noeleen Horan

Divison 7 candidate Noeleen Horan.
Divison 7 candidate Noeleen Horan.

Well maintained roads play a vital role in our region, supporting growth and development as well as providing safe and easy access to critical services like hospitals and schools.

Safety must always be the first priority and regular community consultation is key to understanding residents’ concerns.

Based on my conversations with residents and businesses in Division 7 there are some key and reoccurring issues with roads and access in the industrial areas in Parkhurst and Park Avenue.

I would like to see further community consultation with key stakeholders, making safety the first priority.

Division 7: Donna Kirkland

Division 7 candidate Donna Kirkland.
Division 7 candidate Donna Kirkland.

Footpaths and kerb and channelling for safety of children and elderly along Farm St between Withers and Alexander St.

Kerb and channelling for all ndustrial areas throughout Division 7.

Line marking to mitigate dangerous intersection at Farm and Alexander St.

Survey and re-address dangerous five-ways intersection, Richardson Rd.

Footpaths for across railway on Main St.

Footpaths for major arterial roads throughout the division so people are not forced to walk on roads.

Finish walkways on Belmont Rd for safety.

Off-road parking at parks. multiple drainage issues (and) that’s just Division 7.

Where to vote for pre-polling

• Gracemere Community Centre, 6‐9 Barry Street, Gracemere

  • James Lawrence Pavilion, Rockhampton Showgrounds, New

Exhibition Rd, Wandal

  • The Green Shed, 36 Thompson Ave, Mount Morgan
  • Yeppoon Town Hall, 25 Normanby St, Yeppoon