Union joins fight against lights at top of range
UPDATE: The Transport Workers' Union has warned sparks will fly if a new set of traffic lights is installed near the top of the Toowoomba Range - and not just from the overworked brakes of b-double trucks.
A council-approved plan to develop a shopping and fast-food precinct on the corner of Herries and Cohoe Sts will come under fire from local residents, road users and transport companies tomorrow night.
At the centre of the dispute is a Main Roads directive that the project could only go ahead if new traffic lights were installed at the busy intersection.
"The decision to stop traffic at the top of the range is ludicrous," TWU state secretary Peter Biagini said.
"Our number one priority is safety, and you simply cannot stop heavy vehicles on the range."
Mr Biagini called on Transport and Main Roads Minister Scott Emerson to veto council's approval of the development.
"Residents are right to fear what will happen," he said.
"Parking trucks on the range is a massive safety risk.
"Traffic already struggles to get traction, let alone it having to stop and start."
Tourist Rd resident Jack Clarence has seen first-hand just how much antagonism towards the project exists in his neighbourhood.
He collected 663 signatures of opposition by doorknocking before its approval, but it was in vain.
"Council has completely ignored the quality of life of people living in this area," he said.
Mr Clarence will at the public meeting for objectors from 7pm tomorrow at the St Luke's Anglican Church Hall.
Organisers hope to form a committee to plan how to fight the development.