||Issue No. 191||15 August 2003|
Three Year Itch
Interview: The New Deal
Unions: In the Line of Hire
Culture: Too Cool for the Collective?
International: The Domino Effect
Industrial: A Spanner in the Works
National Focus: Gathering of the Tribes
History: The Welcome Nazi Tourist
Bad Boss: Domm, Domm Turn Around
Poetry: Just Move On.
Review: Reality Bites
The Locker Room
MUA CD Launch
The Remittance Man
Letters to the Editor
I'm no public transport lobbyist or protester, but just an ordinary bloke believing that the Government has lost the plot regarding public transport.
Is anyone planning a weekend rally or something on this?
We've heard about the scandals surrounding the safety of rail bridges and the Millennium trains, but the current construction of the Parramatta Rail Link is much worse. Instead of a bridge across the Lane Cove River, which the Government wanted and the minor parties (including the Greens) supported but the Libs opposed, we've got a tunnel being built below the river. It means that there's no station at the UTS campus, meaning that non-northern-side students can't get there quickly, and there's now some 5km of underground track without stations, which is unviable and impractical and, worse still, highly unsafe. The Government should have put down the local zealots (who don't even vote for the Labor Party), as the Greens did, and stuck with a bridge - in capitulating to these windbags, it has acted in the most cowardly and irresponsible manner ever. And the Libs won't do anything - they're hooked to the road lobby like drug addicts. The Government chops down trees in the dead of the night, Bjelke-Petersen-style, to make way for a road tunnel, and is happy to build a road tunnel through Lane Cove, despite the idea that new road tunnels will ease traffic gridlock is an absolute lie. So why won't it clear 2ha of parkland to make way for a non-polluting rail bridge, which even Ian Cohen and Lee Rhiannon have supported? Work that out if you can. And now Bob Carr and friends want to jack up fares for public transport - what a better way to get people back into their cars and increase the gridlock! Thank goodness for Labor MP Paul Gibson and Labor Council bloke John Robertson for speaking out against the Government's stupidity. And what hypocrites the Libs for slamming the Government - they're happy to have more cars on the roads, and they will cut through the Lane Cove National Park to link the M2 and F3 roads, bringing yet more cars, doing more environmental damage than any rail line ever would do. And still on the planned road tunnel through Lane Cove, unless action is taken soon, this absolutely stupid project will start before the end of the year. Somebody has to put a stop to this - now! It's perfectly simple. The Government must stop the tunnel under the Lane Cove River, revert back to a bridge, and restore the UTS station, otherwise the Parramatta Rail Link won't work properly and we'll have another Airport-Link-style white elephant. And if the tunnel developers must be compensated, so be it - remember that work HAD started on the Franklin Dam in Tasmania when the Hawke Government stopped it in 1983 (and no doubt you remember that).
I hope that somebody can do something here about the Government's actions on public transport, and fix up this stupid mess with the Parramatta Rail Link. And whoever does has my support - this ordinary bloke is just a believer in this issue, but sadly a lone voice. Could someone please prove me wrong?
WARREN GRZIC, a very concerned and angry observer.
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