Response to G. Miller 27 Jan - Letter to the Editor
Unfortunately Grant Miller does not argue his position based on facts. Burril Lake Community Association [BLCA] is a community association working to achieve a "Better Bypass" which supports us all, not just self-interested minorities.
If that means a western route is the best route then it should be the preferred route.
Our association and the Tabourie Residents and Ratepayers Association have over 5,000 signatures supporting this view in a petition which will be presented to the NSW Parliament in February.
A summary of all comments made during the community consultation period indicated seven per cent support for the preferred route and 76 per cent against, a 10:1 ratio.
Contrary to G. Miller's comments on alternative routes our association has put forward five alternative routes to Tr NSW for consideration.
Some of these are western routes, some are not, however none follow Woodstock or Woodburn Roads.
The issue with Tr NSW preferred option is it cannot deliver the requirements under the "Transport for NSW Princes Highway Upgrade Roadmap to 2040", released on 30 November 2020 i.e. two lanes each way, 100km/hr standard road without devastating effects on all the communities south of Milton.
Therefore the discussion should not be just about the Milton /Ulladulla bypass, it must be a holistic approach for the Princes Highway upgrade.
As Matt Del of the Vice President to the Milton/ Ulladulla Business Chamber commented in last week's newspaper "the devil is in the detail".
Tr NSW has repeatedly commented during the consultation process, subsequent meetings and Q & A sessions that it has not worked out the detail.
Cost The length of Tr NSW preferred route starting at Little Forest and ending at Canberra Crescent is 13 km.
The additional length of highway required to upgrade the highway for the full length of the study area to Termeil is 14.5 km making the overall length of the preferred option 27.5 km.
Options 6 and 7 nominated by Tr NSW extend for the full length of the study area and are 20.5 km in length, 7 km shorter than the preferred route.
So the cost to complete the highway upgrade, according to G. Miller's theory, for the preferred option would be significantly more than routes 6 or 7.
The Berry to Bombaderry bypass cost $450m for 10km i.e. $45m per km.
This figure does not take into account the additional cost of significant bridge work at Burrill Lake, Tabourie and Termeil or the elevated roadway required along Tabourie Straight due to environmental and flooding issues.
Environment By adopting Canberra Crescent as the end point of the Milton Ulladulla bypass it sets in stone that the Princes Highway upgrade south of Burrill Lake will follow the existing highway route along Tabourie straight.
This will require construction over ecologically endangered salt marshes, which were also damaged by fire and new bridge crossings at Tabourie and Termeil Creeks.
There will be environmental loss also between Green Street and Canberra Crescent due to extensive tree clearing.
The areas of Meroo National Park affected by routes 6 or 7 are not wetlands.
The routes follow the power easements, in part, and the areas where it does not were State Forest until 2001 south of Wheelbarrow Road and 2010 north of Wheelbarrow Road. Interestingly, there is no comment from G. Miller on the massive tree clearing currently being undertaken by Endeavour Energy along its power easements at Termeil and north through Meroo National Park which is being undertaken as essential infrastructure work to protect its assets from bushfire.
This area was heavily logged form the mid 1800's to 1960'.
These facts challenge the "massive environmental costs" comment made. Aboriginal sites.
The area has been studied for many years and all potential sites have been identified.
These sites can be found on the Aboriginal Heritage Information Management System (AHIMS) database which is available through the NSW Department of Environment. Compassion To suggest there is no compassion for fire victims is inflammatory and divisive.
The routes BLCA has nominated do not follow Woodstock or Woodburn Roads.
What are the consequences if the Canberra Crescent option is adopted?
In Burrill Lake it will mean this: Homes and businesses adjacent to the western side of the current highway will be resumed including the community hall.
There will be service roads for local traffic resulting in six to eight lanes of roadway on the northern side of the bridge and six on the southern side. Residents on the northern western side of the bridge will exit and enter by a flyover or roundabout at Canberra Crescent.
Residents on the southern side of the bridge will access the highway by either a roundabout or on \ off ramps at Wallaroy Drive.
The bridge will be either duplicated or expanded to cater for four lanes. The frontage of Bungalow Park and mini golf will be resumed for the service road to enable residents and visitor to access Bungalow Park and south Burrill.
Residences, where there is no room for a service road, will be resumed as private driveways cannot have direct access onto the highway.
Other issues will be how cyclists and pedestrians are protected, how bus stops are managed and how access to beaches is maintained.
Increased noise pollution from traffic travelling at 80 to 100km/h Health The Harvard's Medical School and School of Public Health, together with researchers from The University of California at Berkeley, have reaffirmed that exposure to diesel exhaust causes an increased risk of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, or COPD. World Health Organization's (WHO) International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) concluded in June 2012 that diesel engine exhaust is a Group 1 carcinogen.
In its media release of June 2012 states "The scientific evidence was reviewed thoroughly by the Working Group and overall it was concluded that there was sufficient evidence in humans for the carcinogenicity of diesel exhaust.
The Working Group found that diesel exhaust is a cause of lung cancer (sufficient evidence) and also noted a positive association (limited evidence) with an increased risk of bladder cancer." Diesel engine exhaust (DEE) created by burning diesel fuels contain a mixture of airborne chemicals that are harmful to people.
When breathed in, these chemicals increase the risk of developing long-term health problems. This includes lung cancer and possibly bladder cancer.
"In Australia, diesel engine exhaust is the second most common cancer-causing agent (carcinogen) behind ultraviolet radiation exposure."(Cancer Council Australia)
So the questions to be asked are:
Why construct a highway upgrade: which includes the MU bypass that is the longest and potentially the most expensive route for the study area from Little Forest to Termeil? which will disenfranchise the most people in the study area which destroys the social fabric and liveability of villages when there are alternatives?
In immediate proximity to residential areas in Ulladulla and Burrill Lake where the community will be at increased risk of exposure to carcinogens with long term devastating consequences?
Let's hoped the Government / Tr NSW will make a decision based on the facts and not on unfounded arguments by those who will be fundamentally unaffected.
Ian Carroll President Burril Lake Community Association Inc.