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Letter to Corinda Residents from Cr. Julian Simmonds

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Cr. Julian Simmonds
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Letter to Corinda Residents from Cr. Julian Simmonds

16 December 2011
 
Dear Resident,
 
I write following the recent consultation process that Brisbane City Council undertook to garner local views on a proposed bikeway to connect Corinda to Rocklea.
 
Originally suggested by local residents, it was intended this bikeway would fill a vital missing link in the network, better connecting residents of Sherwood and Oxley to public transport and local businesses.
 
Unfortunately, your local Councillor has made it clear during the consultation process and in media reports that she does not support the proposed bikeway and in particular the route recommended by Council engineers.  Further she believes Council is forcing a bikeway on the residents of Corinda.  It is certainly not Council's intention to do so.
 

Your local Councillor has expressed suport for an alternative bikeway route which in the opinion of Council's experienced flood engineers will increase flooding for surrounding residents and cause greater environmental impact on Oxley Creek.
 
I will not accept any option for this bikeway which could potentially increase flooding for local residents.
 
As a result, and given the refusal of the local Councillor to engage in a meaningful way on this issue, the project will not proceed at this time.
 
I wish to thank those residents who took the time to provide their feedback on the project.
 
Yours sincerely
Councillor Julian Simmonds
Chairman for Public and Active Transport

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Allan Howard
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Request for Flood Study

Dear Cr. Simmonds,

Thank you for your letter dated 16-Dec-2011.

As your letter asserts the flood study results of a proposed bridge crossing at Kennard Street presents problems to residents I am certain that the flood modelling of Oxley Creek must have recently been updated to full 2-dimensional modelling as only such a model would properly reflect the impact of a bikeway/pedestrian bridge.

The community is most interested in viewing the results of an updated council flood study in the area around our suburbs along Oxley Creek including the recently constructed Sherwood Bus Depot.

Can you please make the results of this flood study available to residents so that we can all appreciate the claims made by council engineers on the flood effect of a Kennard Street bridge?

Yours Sincerely,
Allan Howard
President
Walter Taylor South Action Group Inc.

Cr. Julian Simmonds
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Reply from Cr. Julian Simmonds on release of bikeway flood study

Dear Mr. Howard,
 
Thank you for taking the time to reply to my letter concerning Oxley Creek Bikeway.
 
Please be assured that I will keep your comments in mind when I discuss this issue with my Council collegues.
 
As outlined in my previous letter, the proposed Oxley Creek Bikeway will not proceed at this time.
 
In regard to your enquiry concerning flood study data I can advise that you can access Council's publically available flood information via it's website at www.brisbane.qld.gov.au.
 
As this particular project is no longer proceeding, it is not Council's intention to provide any further project specific information at this stage.
 
Yours sincerely
Councillor Julian Simmonds
Chairman for Public and Active Transport.

webmaster
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WTSAG Committee Clarification for Cr. Julian Simmonds

Dear Cr. Simmonds,
 
Our committee has discussed your response (CO01577-2012 Howard.pdf) and we feel that you are perhaps lacking an understanding with regards to the subject matter raised.
 
The current flood modelling of Oxley Creek and hence the information on council's website is based on an older 1-dimensional modelling technique that only recognises that water flows in a single direction. The current recognised modern method of modelling utilises 2-dimensional modelling which recognises that water can flow in more than one directions, especially with varying inputs such as those found in Oxley Creek catchment. This has a direct impact on the accuracy of modelling results in a complex environment, especially with man-made structures such as roads, bridges, land-fill, etc.
 
If as you state the Kennard Street bridge has been rejected by council engineers as being unsuitable because of increased flood risk concerns for local residents then it follows that council must have updated their modelling technique as they are doing across the city, for this particular area. We are therefore extremely interested in seeing the results of this flood modelling, not just the flood level line as in the current website mapping which is still showing old information (pre Sherwood Bus Depot).
 
Could you please investigate this and report on the state of the modelling method used in determining this critical piece of information?
 
Your Sincerely,
Allan Howard
President
Walter Taylor South Action Group Inc.

Cr. Julian Simmonds
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Cr. Julian Simmonds promises to investigate Flood Study

Dear Mr. Howard
 
Thank you for your email of 9 February 2012 in relation to the Oxley Creek Bikeway.
 
I have referred your request to the appropriate Council officers and asked that they investigate your concerns.  I will be sure to contact you again with the outcome of this investigation.
 
Yours sincerely
Councillor Julian Simmonds
Chairman for Public and Active Transport
Re: CO05967-2012

Daniel Benz
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Joined: 23/08/2009 - 8:59pm
Cancellation Oxley Ck Bikeway

Cr Simmonds, I read with interest your letter of 16/12/11.  I am disappointed it seems you have let politics get in the way regarding this issue.  Its a shame you have let your disrespect for the Councillor for Tennyson colour your thinking.  I am sure that most of the residents (some with extensive engineering and ecological knowledge and experience) who took the time to provide considered reasonable responses to the Bikeway Team would similarly be disappointed in this action as the majority of the feedback to council regarding this issue was "community driven" with support from the local councillor. An example of this was the public meeting of 16/11/11 called by the community, not the local councillor which BCC representatives failed to attend.
Regards
Frustrated constituent.
 

Philip
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Joined: 17/08/2009 - 11:26am
LNP Up to Old Dirty Tricks

Sadly Julian Simmonds is trying to punish the local residents of Corinda, Sherwood and Oxley by taking cheap political shots at his former LNP colleague, the Councillor for Fairfield.  
Following the standards of behaviour set by the former Lord Mayor, anybody who gets in the way of what they (the LNP) want must be eliminated. Sadly this decision reflects more on Mr Simmonds, and the LNP's lust for power at any cost, rather than on trying to do their job and serve the community as community representatives. 
This is juvenile behaviour reminiscent of taking your bat and ball and going home.
It is so sad that the LNP takes such an abysmal and childish stance. But we should all be very clear; this action is about trying to punish the member for Fairfield, and her constituents, before a Council election.  I think the local population is a bit too smart for such childish antics
  

S Donaghey
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Dear Councillor

Dear Councillor Simmonds,
Grow up.
And perhaps thank the local community for their feedback which was mostly in support of a pathway in a more practical location. I would be interested in the results of the flood study showing that one 3 metre wide path and one bridge in the Kennard Street area would have more effect on the floodplains than the elevated bus depot being constructed as we speak. If you could please direct us to those results it would be greatly appreciated.
Perhaps the budget required for such an astronomical task is a more relevant consideration and would likely be a more justifiable reason to cancel the plan.
Regards,
Local constituent (who appreciates the support of the local councillor and does not consider themselves under her direction)

Yvonne Bursle
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Cr Simmonds' letter

 Cr Simmonds: Is this a childish joke?  Council has just poured massive amounts of fill into the area to support its bus depot but tells us a bikeway might have possible flood effects?  If this were a private company, there'd be legal battles brewing.  Just more of what we've come to expect from your unethical and hypocritical lot.
Y.Bursle

Nicole Johnston
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Letter from Cr. Nicole Johnston in reply to Cr. Julian Simmonds

It's a Christmas miracle! After failing to listen to residents' concerns about the Sherwood Bus Depot and the Sherwood Graceville Neighbourhood Plan, Council has announced that it will not be proceeding with the proposed Oxley Creek Bikeway at Nosworthy Park.
 
This is good news for the many residents and community groups that expressed strong concerns about the environmental, access and amenity impacts on the Common and Nosworthy Park.
 
Residents will be reading Councillor Julian Simmonds' gracious announcement on behalf of Council in their letterbox this week. Not a lot of Christmas cheer in his missive!
 
If you are interested in knowing what Cr Simmonds view of refusing to "engage in a meaningful way" means, you might like to click here where my submission and the motion I moved in Council can be found. I have always supported a bikeway across Oxley Creek to increase safety and connectivity for Sherwood and Corinda Residents and believe that a dedicated new shared pathway should be built along Sherwood Rd.
 
It's not my job simply to agree with Cr Simmonds, but to represent you' the community' and ensure that your voice is heard. Petty politics like this should not have been a factor at all.
 
Flooding
Cr Simmonds' allegations that my support for an alternative bikeway will increase flooding are offensive. Remember that this is the same Councillor who is in charge of the Sherwood Bus Depot, where thousands of tonnes of fill have been dumped to raise the height of the site in places up to 2-3 metres. Yet Cr Simmonds and Council have publicly denied that this will result in any additional flooding impacts.
 
BCC engineers recommended three viable options for the new bikeway location - Kennard St, Martindale St and Nosworthy Park. The real reason that Council did not want the bikeway at Kennard Street was made clear by Councillor Margaret De Wit, the former Public Transport Chairman, during debate in Council on 15 November when she said:
 
"I said looking at Kennard St, putting bikes down that street where the bus depot is didn't seem like a real good idea to me,” Cr De Wit said.
 
What's Next
Upgrading Sherwood Road to build a dedicated off road shared pathway is and remains my number one bikeway priority. I will continue to lobby for funding for this vital safety and connectivity upgrade for residents, school students and commuters in the future. Council now has $2.5m dollars in the forward estimates to start planning, design and consultation.
 
Merry Christmas, Nicole.
Putting people before politics

Marie Hollingworth
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My letter to Cr Julian Simmonds

20th December 2011
 
Marie Hollingworth
115 Nelson Street
Corinda 4075
 
Cr Julian Simmonds
Brisbane City Council
GPO Box 1434
Brisbane 4001
 
Dear Councillor Simmonds
Re: your letter of 16th December advising the Oxley Creek bikeway proposal will not proceed.
 
Thank you for your letter advising that this proposal will not proceed.
 
It is a great relief to me that you have listened to the concerns expressed by the community and I commend you for being prepared to respect these views and take this step.
 
I am aware there has been significant community response to this proposal and that this has not been favourable. The reasons for this are that the bikeway is not in the most direct place for cyclists to use, the location of the bridge and its effect on flooding at all 3 locations and the considerable concern about the effect on the valued environments on both sides of Oxley Creek.
 
I trust that suitable connectivity can be achieved at a later date without unnecessary destruction of recreational areas or affecting homes by exacerbation of flooding. Ideally this will be incorporated in a full upgrade of Sherwood Road which is long overdue particularly with the traffic increases from the Bus Depot now added into the equation.
 
To help achieve this end, you will have received the many worthwhile proposals sent in to council during November as part of a collaborative process by members of the community who are qualified in these fields. Their local knowledge and experience of the issues should help provide the needed missing link in the network.
 
Although a bridge across the creek has been a wish for many for some time, as you acknowledged, I do not believe that the full implications or cost of constructing this had been thought through until faced with the effects of this proposal.
 
I must correct you in relation to the origin of the concerns about the proposed bikeway. When surveyors and notices first appeared in Nosworthy Park and Oxley Creek Common in about September 2010, I spoke to Adrian Ford, Project Manager to obtain an explanation of what was intended. Following this, others and myself immediately raised our concerns with our Tennyson Ward Representative, Nicole Johnston who has since undertaken to represent these views to Council.
 
It is our expectation that it is the role of our elected representative to put forward the views of the community so that rational debate can take place and those views – even if opinions differ - will be respected and considered. That this was not occurring affects public confidence in the decision-making process of council.
 
Council’s dedication to creating a better Brisbane is very evident in the work being undertaken. In this process Corinda residents have had many changes planned for their locality but residents do not wish the liveability of the suburb to be compromised .
 
For this reason your decision to respect the views of the community and not proceed with such a contentious proposal is to be commended and again I thank you for this.
 
Yours faithfully
Marie Hollingworth

Nicole Johnston
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Local Councillor refused same bikeway info residents can access

Dear Mr Jensen,
 
I have just called the Oxley Creek Bikeway information line on 1800 550 712 to seek official Council advice on the status of the Bikeway project.
 
I have been advised by Ms Ruth Cushley that she is not allowed to speak to me as per "standard council policy".
 
This is a public information line but apparently I'm not entitled to information that can be given to the public?
 
I do not consider that this reflects the statements made in your letter of 7 December that Council will work with me in a "consultative way" nor is it "in the spirit of open and transparent communication" that you profess the bikeway team is keen to engage in.
 
Furthermore, Council policy is very clear that I can speak with any Council representative regarding local Council matters in my ward.
 
Perhaps you can explain why members of the public are being advised of Council's decision, but not me as the Local Councillor?
 
Council distributed letters to Corinda residents dated last week, but today Council will not even speak with me and provide me with any official advice about the decision.
 
Regards
Nicole Johnston
Councillor for Tennyson Ward
Fairfield Gardens
180 Fairfield Rd
Fairfield QLD 4103
T: 07 3403 8605
F: 07 3403 8607

Murray
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suggestion

Might I suggest that a Right to Information request be lodged to discover how this decision was made?

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