IPSWICH’s transport network including roads, pedestrian and cyclist facilities, public transport, freight movements and car parking are about to be put under the spotlight. Ipswich City Council has today launched the development of an integrated transport plan for the city named iGO. City Infrastructure Committee Chairperson Councillor Cheryl Bromage said iGO will provide a long-term blueprint for transport policy and investment across Ipswich.
Cr Bromage said iGO would be intrinsically linked to council’s long term community plan and the Queensland Government’s SEQ Regional Plan and their demographic forecasts for the city. “Through the preparation of iGO, council will be seeking the community’s input into this vital plan,” she said. “We encourage the community to visit the iGo website to learn more about the plan and how it affects them. The website can be accessed at http://www.ipswich.qld.gov.au/igoipswich.”
Cr Bromage said that it was predicted that the number of daily transport trips made by Ipswich residents would triple from around 500,000 in 2006 to 1,500,000 in 2031. “These figures highlight the difficulty road authorities, such as council, will face when trying to provide adequate transport infrastructure to support the forecast population and economic growth.” Cr Bromage said iGO would cover a wide range of topics to do with the planning and management of transport within the city. “The challenges faced included the rapid growth of the city, high car dependency, improving accessibility in the rural parts of the city, energy consumption, peak oil, climate change, physical inactivity, public transport needs and increased freight movements.
“These are all factors which will need to be considered when planning the city’s future transport networks.” “We will also be looking at how our transport networks serve our key activity centres and industrial areas as these areas will be vita to drive growth in the local and regional economy.” Cr Bromage said part of the plan would focus on travel behaviour and transport mode choice. “We will be looking at ways to encourage people to use more sustainable modes of transport, such as walking, cycling and public transport.” Cr Bromage said the preparation of iGO would be closely co-ordinated with council’s land use planning activities to ensure an integrated transport and land use strategy was followed as the city develops. “This will allow future transport corridors to be identified and preserved for the future as the city grows. “The involvement of the Department of Transport and Main Roads throughout the process will also be vital for the success of the plan.”
Rail Back on Track spokesperson Robert Dow said iGO would be critical for the future of the Ipswich area. “I would like to commend Ipswich City Council for the steps they are taking to ensure the transport requirements of this region are considered for the future,” Mr Dow said. “They are laying important groundwork for the transport vision of the region in the years ahead. “It is essential that a balanced approach is taken as the plan needs to involve not only roads, but also public and active transport. “There needs to be an increased focus on public transport as you cannot just keep widening the roads in Ipswich to cope with future transport demands.” Mr Dow said he wanted to encourage all residents to take part in the feedback process for iGO.