The chronic congestion of Noosa’s renowned Hastings Street is notorious and unbecoming of the shire, says councillor candidate Andrew Squires.
“The strip between the national park and the river mouth, traversing Hastings Street on the way, has for too long presented problems to pedestrians and motorists and had repercussive effects to Noosa Junction, Noosa Sound and beyond,” said Mr Squires.
“It’s also a major problem for local residents who run into traffic jams getting in and out of their homes.
“I’m sure we can find a sensible and sustainable solution to regularise the chaos it creates. Hastings Street is one of Australia’s great shopping strips and it deserves far more council attention than its getting,” he said.
Mr Squires said the council must put more effort into transforming the Hastings Street precinct into a more people friendly zone.
“The solution requires two related projects, the first minimising traffic moving into Hastings Street by providing adequate parking and the second efficiently moving people and equipment along the strip between Noosa National Park and Noosa Woods, which would likely require a public transit system.
“My understanding of the biosphere concept is that communities must be clever in how we fit the human, environmental and economic pieces together,” he said.
“But there’s no such adroitness evident in how we’ve approached the Hastings Street dilemma.
“Perfectly positioned amidst ocean, lagoon, national park and woodland, its uniqueness is a celebration of how a biosphere can work – except for unresolved and worsening traffic problems.”
“If elected, I’ll ask councillors to instigate a public consultation into how best the Hastings Street precinct can be transformed into a zone more befitting the natural and built environmental values of Noosa Shire,” Mr Squires said.
“At present it’s failing the test.”