BUTTENSHAW Drive at Austinmer could become an alternative main road to relieve the festering congestion along Lawrence Hargrave Drive, says the Greens – And they’re not happy.
Labor councillor Jenelle Rimmer put a motion to Council on Monday night to investigate options for building more roads in Thirroul, Bulli and Austinmer, which was supported by all the Labor and Liberal councillors and opposed by the two Greens councillors, Mithra Cox and Cath Blakey.
Any proposal to develop a firetrail linking the end of Phillip Street at Thirroul to Foothills Road at Austinmer into a second main road through prestine bushland has been condemmed by residents and conservationists.
Ward One Greens councillor, Mithra Cox said residents of Buttenshaw Drive have already contacted her concerned about the current increase in traffic and lack of footpaths.
“There will be a huge backlash if there is any plan to make Buttenshaw Drive an alternative main road to Lawrence Hargrave Drive,” Cr Cox said.
“Councillors have had a flurry of letters and phone calls from residents, all of which opposed this ill considered plan.
“We definitely have a congestion problem in Wollongong, and we need serious investment in public and active transport to solve this.
“Building another road into Thirroul or Austinmer will double the traffic coming in, and just move the bottleneck a few kilometres north.
“Our subtropical rainforest is unique and wonderful – and should be protected from development whether that’s roads or houses. New housing should be along the train line, there should be a cycleway next to the rail corridor, and our trains should run every 15 minutes.
“If we don’t invest in public and active transport, our car use and our traffic congestion will continue to increase,” Cr Cox said.