Council documents have laid bare the extent of major delays in the roll-out of the third stage of the light rail from Broadbeach to Burleigh. HOW LONG WE’LL HAVE TO WAIT >>
MAJOR delays are surfacing in the roll out of light rail Stage 3, according to council documents.
Council financial papers to be presented to Wednesday’s water, waste and energy committee outline revised payment deadlines from the city to the state for the extension from Broadbeach to Burleigh.
The Southport rollout — the track being built in the CBD as part of the first stage now completed.
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Officers note the payments were “$7.50m below forecast” and “project expenditure is tracking behind forecast due to an amended payment schedule from the state government”.
“The first $7.5m payment originally scheduled for May 2021 has been deferred to May 2022,” the report says.
The documents show Stage 3’s “Press and Leak Monitor System” was “$500,000 below forecast”.
“Project expenditure is tracking behind forecast due to delays in finalising the procurement activities required to proceed with installation of the equipment,” the report says.
While the finances are unlikely to be debated, council insiders say it shows concrete evidence of delays in the project.
The new Save Our Southern Gold Coast (SOSGC) group is concerned about a blowout in costs of the trams heading south.
The track being built in the first stage at the Southport CBD.
Members are asking if future costings include land resumptions and loss of business.
“There is no clear idea of the cost of Stage 4 Burleigh to Coolangatta that can’t be ascertained until the preliminary business plan is completed and that is not expected until 2022,” SOSGC leader Kath Down said.
“The reason Stage 3 – Broadbeach to Burleigh – has not started construction is the contract has not been completely signed off by the contractors which is causing further delay owing to the blowout construction costs putting the project under budget.
The stations planned for light rail stage 3a from Broadbeach to Burleigh on the Gold Coast.
“There are many engineering problems associated in the ground, meaning Stage 3 is unlikely to start until the end of the year.”
The government is still finalising negotiations on the main contract for Stage 3. GoldLinQ has signed off on an early works agreement.
The delays in funding for Stage 3, which first surfaced in April for the 6.7km track, suggested the project could cost more than $1 bn, up from the original $709m.
Light rail planned for Broadbeach to Burleigh extension on the Gold Coast.
The state’s contribution in the three-way funding with the council and Commonwealth has increased from $350m in 2019 to $553.95m.
The Bulletin is seeking updates from the government.
WHAT LIGHT RAIL WILL DO TO SKYLINE FROM BROADBEACH TO BURLEIGH
WHAT will the light rail corridor do to the Broadbeach to Burleigh skyline? The proposed 12-storey Nobby Beach towers have sent shockwaves. The reality is this won’t become Surfers.
Planning insiders at council say The Oxley and The Frederick buildings – which the developer hopes to complete by 2025, a year after the trams start operating – will not get approval.
Light rail from Broadbeach to Nobby Beach – this graphic shows how future development in various zones could look like.
When councillors ticked off the City Plan for this area, it was to preserve a three-storey limit. Your best guide is to watch a council video promoting the 2015 draft City Plan – you can watch it in the player above.
Heading south along the Gold Coast Highway past Broadbeach, the cut-off point for unlimited height is Peerless Ave, opposite Pacific Fair.
Given it’s a performance-based plan, developers by presenting attractive projects can get a 50 per cent uplift. So at best here, that amounts to just over four storeys.
Light rail from Broadbeach to Nobby Beach – this graphic shows the taller buildings possible closer to Broadbeach.
Council is currently preparing City Plan major updates two and three. Building heights were reduced after town hall protest meetings last year at Palm Beach and Biggera Waters.
Broadbeach to Nobby Beach is yet to face the same scrutiny. It will occur with major update four. The reasoning is council needs to take account of current light rail consultation.
A citywide survey will be followed by feedback from groups of 15 people in neighbourhoods.
Area councillor Pauline Young told your columnist: “People who live on that corridor will have their say. They will be people who I guess have a very balanced view of it all, not just ‘we don’t want any redevelopment or urbanisation or renewal of the area’.
Light rail impact on planning from Broadbeach to Nobby Beach – this graphic highlights the shopping precinct.
“There is (City Plan) major updates two and three that protects a big part of the eastern side of the Gold Coast Highway. But when you get down to that Nobby precinct, there’s quite a few say catalyst sites that may benefit from some good neighbourhood planning rather than saying a flat out ‘no’ to any height there.”
Let’s look at the proposal for the 12-storey buildings. It offers 217 car spaces, less than the 286 under the City Plan. The developer will argue that number is well in excess because a tram station will be there due to light rail.
Light rail from Broadbeach to Nobby Beach – what developments could look like.
Several other large sites, some on the western side, could also be developed. Let’s say council gets an application that has height but 400 underground car parks, each valued at $50,000.
“There has to be some give and take,” Cr Young says.
“If they are going, ‘give us 400 underground car parks’ we need to be able to say to them ‘can we give them some additional height’, but just do it as a neighbourhood plan, where just this particular area may benefit from some height because the city is certainly not going to build 400 underground car parks at Nobbys as it sits now.”
Light rail from Broadbeach to Nobby Beach – what developments could look like on the Gold Coast Highway heading north to Surfers Paradise.
Remember residents can influence the council by having their say in the next few months.
Council needs to know what is acceptable for residents and businesses, so redevelopment can be assessed and ticked off when the highway is being ripped up for light rail.
Nobby Beach is going to suffer pain making way for the trams. The surgery for this makeover must be reduced, limited to the next three years. Any longer will be fatal for small businesses.