A view of Imbil, where two new projects look set to add 50 per cent to the town’s population.
A view of Imbil, where two new projects look set to add 50 per cent to the town’s population. Craig Warhurst

Major projects boost Imbil

PROGRESS has its price at Imbil, apparently, where two almost adjacent developments seem likely to increase the town’s population by up to 50 per cent.

That means more traffic and that means developer contributions to upgrade potentially dangerous intersections, Gympie Regional Council’s Planning and Development Committee was told this week.

Councillors were considering conditions placed on a 105-lot subdivision in Ballard Road and traffic complications associated with it and another project across the road.

However, some councillors were concerned that contributions for intersection upgrading, while not excessive, may be spent on the wrong intersection.

The committee meeting was told of complications related to a need to upgrade the intersection of Kandanga-Imbil Road and the Mary Valley Road, where traffic from the project would likely be concentrated, as home owners make their way to and from Gympie or the Sunshine Coast hinterland.

But the committee’s acting chairman, Jan Watt, said she was more concerned about the intersection at Ballard Road.

Strongly backed by fellow Mary Valley councillor Julie Walker, she described it as “absolutely frightening,” but said her views had been over-ruled when the matter was previously before the committee.

“Everyone said I was mad at the time,” she said.

Cr Walker said she shared Cr Watt’s concerns. “Cars hide there,” she said.

Cr Watt said that, based on numbers from when sewerage was connected at Imbil, she estimated the number of houses already in the town at upwards of 350.

Works and Services Committee chairman Larry Friske said that a 50 per cent increase in population would likely lead to a corresponding increase in use of the Mary Valley Road intersection, even if it was nearly 8km away.

“We sought advice from the design engineer and I think this (intersection upgrade) needs to happen,” he said.

The upgrade work was described as “minimal” and “probably only an extra strip of bitumen,” estimated to cost $40,000.

Gympie Times


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