In response to concerns raised regarding vegetation clearing along Louis Bazzo Drive and other state roads, we have been advised the following by the Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR):
- The purpose of these works is to clear vegetation and trees close to the road to remove potential hazards and improve the safety of motorists.
- TMR programs maintenance works from a safety perspective, with safety issues being the highest priority ahead of other activities.
- Vegetation clearing is undertaken up to nine metres from the road edge on high-speed roads (80 km/h and above) across the state-controlled road network. This allows a safe line of sight for roadside furniture, such as signs, guideposts, driveway access points and other intersecting roads. The works also have the secondary benefit of increasing the firebreak within the road corridor. This clearance is in line with national road standards and is systematically being addressed on other roads throughout Australia.
- Since early 2020, RoadTek, TMR’s maintenance contractor, has been undertaking a program of road corridor vegetation grooming management along key Sunshine Coast roads, in particular high-speed roads.
- This work focuses on reinstating clear zones by removing regrowth and obstacles in cleared road corridors. The cleared road corridors will continue to be maintained as part of RoadTek’s routine maintenance mowing program.
Background on a section of Louis Bazzo Rd which contained community native vegetation planting:
- In early 2021, RoadTek completed vegetation grooming on almost the full length of Boreen Road, minus the short three-kilometre section between Cootharaba Downs Road and Lake Flat Road, Boreen Point.
The reason this section was omitted was due to the road surface having been recently resealed and the machinery used for vegetation grooming works can damage a new seal. The seal has had enough time to cure and RoadTek was able to commence vegetation grooming works on this three-kilometre section of Boreen Point.
We have also included this example in our budget considerations to the Minister, to request a program of offset planting in other areas to compensate for loss of environment and habitat under these circumstances.