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Gold Coast Light Rail Stage Two boost to Queensland transport network
With extensive light rail developments already taking place in Sydney, Canberra and Perth, and with proposals for light rail development in Parramatta, Newcastle and Hobart, light rail aims to provide world-class passenger transport at a reasonable cost.
Light rail has the benefit of being a low operating-cost per passenger service, as well as being higher passenger-capacity per lane when compared to vehicle transport. Light rail has also been demonstrated in Melbourne and Adelaide as a popular, inexpensive transport option.
Recent light rail projects within Queensland include the development of the Gold Coast Light Rail, which opened to the public in July 2014 to provide light rail transport between Gold Coast University and Broadbeach.
Since opening its doors, more than 1.74 million passengers utilised the Gold Coast Light Rail network in its first 100 days of operation, precipitating a 25% increase in public transport in the area with an estimated 550,000 trips made each month.
With the firm establishment of this successful light rail network, the Queensland government has announced an extension of the light rail line with the addition of an extra 7.3 kilometres of track and three new stations at Helensvale, Parkwood and Parkwood East.
Construction on the light rail line is expected to commence in April 2016, with the Commonwealth government expected to commit $95 million towards the second stage of the light rail network.
Stage two of the development is expected to play a significant role during the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games™ to facilitate the transport of spectators, with the construction of a new 1000 car space park ‘n’ ride facility at Parkwood station and a 400 car space expansion at Helensvale station.
Executive Director (Commonwealth Games) for the Queensland Government Department of Transport and Main Roads, Grant Morris, will be speaking at the 7th Annual Queensland Transport Infrastructure Conference 2016 in May, to discuss these transport options in the build up to the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games™.
Other major transport infrastructure developments currently taking place within Queensland include the Caloundra Road to Sunshine Motorway Upgrade Project, Abbot Point Growth Gateway Project and Warrego Highway Upgrade Program.
The conference is an opportunity for industry leaders and government officials to share ideas on common transport challenges and to acquire the latest information on major transport infrastructure projects taking shape in Queensland.
The 7th Annual Queensland Transport Infrastructure Conference 2016 (http://www.qldconference.com.au/
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