Approval Process


Response by Desley Boyle

The following reply was received on 3rd August (nearly two month later):

Dear Mr Freitag

Thank you for your email of 25 June 12 January 2006 regarding the proposed upgrade of the Kuranda Range Road including the letter regarding this matter, you submitted at the Ministerial Regional Community Forum – Far North Queensland, which was held in Cairns on 19 June 2006. I also note the attached, and the sproposal for a Southern Rail Tunnel.

The Kuranda Range Road upgrade is essential in the short to medium term to achieve the preferred settlement pattern outcomes of the Far North Queensland (FNQ) Regional Plan. The proposed upgrade is a major initiative for the region and has my full support.

I note a number of issues you suggest for consideration in the review of the FNQ Regional Plan. A review of the Regional Structure Plan commencing in the near future will focus on refining and clarifying urban development sequencing taking into account, among other matters, the recent outcomes of the detailed planning study for Myola and studies on the Kuranda Range Road upgrade. However, the review will not revisit the strategic directions and planning concepts which underpin the FNQ Regional Plan, including upgrading Kuranda Range Road.

As advised at the Ministerial Regional Community Forum, in Cairns, the FNQ Regional Plan was developed in partnership with all levels of Government together with a range of key community sector groups. The process also involved considerable public consultation and negotiation with stakeholder groups in the region.

I have referred your concerns regarding the impacts of the proposed upgrade, and your proposal for a Southern Rail Tunnel to my Cabinet Colleague the Honourable Paul Lucas MP, Minister for Transport and Main Roads for consideration and direct response to you.

Yours sincerely

Desley Boyle MP
Minister for Environment
Minister for Local Government and Planning
Minister for Women

We note:
1) Desley Boyle is the Chair of the Ministerial Council making the final recommendation to the Governor on this half to one billion dollar 4-Lane Highway proposal.
2) none of our concerns were addressed in above reply and no meeting was offered.
3) if the road is ‘essential in the short to medium term’ why is the construction period so incredibly long (15-20 years)?
4) Why did the 2010 plan never even consider the possibility of development in areas other than the environmentally highly sensitive Kuranda area? It is deplorable that Desley Boyle insists on Kuranda being turned from a village in the rainforest to a suburbia of tens of thousands (which is likely to result in the loss of its lucrative tourist industry) and refuses to consider poorer Tableland areas and the Innisfail and/or Mareeba areas for settlement and development - why destroy Kuranda and ignore poorer areas? - just so the road construction and real estate agents can make heaps of money before petrol gets too expensive to justify such dinosaur developments???