Which roads will need upgrades to support population boom

UPGRADING four kilometres of a Lockyer Valley road will set ratepayers back $20 million, if population growths continue as expected.

Four major roads in the Lockyer Valley's boomtown will need to be further developed by 2036, to allow for increased road traffic.

In a report released at a recent Lockyer Valley Regional Council meeting, four Plainland roads and the towns' sole set of traffic lights would need upgrades.

Gehrke Road would need to be upgraded to a four-lane road to support an increase in traffic and works to Zischke Road, Niemeyer/Thallon Rds and Fairway Drive would also be required.

While the road enlargements won't happen for the next 20 years, councillor Janice Holstein said the results confirmed what the council was anticipating.

"Most of the roads are okay but looking another couple of decades ahead there will need to be significant upgrades due to the population growth," Cr Holstein said.

The Plainland Transport Planning Study, tabled by engineers GHD, recorded a 3.8 per cent increase in growth along Gehrke Road, averaging 2432 cars in 2006, increasing to 3957 in 2017.

GHD estimated expanding the four kilometres of Gehrke Rd from a two-lane to a four-lane sub-arterial road would cost almost $20 million, excluding property resumption costs.

Upgrades to Niemeyer-Thallon Rd to a sub-arterial two-lane standard would cost almost $16m.

However, Cr Holstein said further developments in the Plainland area could change road usage and potentially bring the 20-year proposed time frame forward.

"Some of this would change if there was major commercial development in the future," she said.

"It's all about council being mindful of what may happen, so we know what needs to be done before it's too late."

In 2016, the Lockyer Valley's population was 39,500 and between 2006 and 2016 it increased by 26 per cent.

According to a report by Stafford Strategy, the Lockyer Valley's population growth could reach 53,000 to 62,000 by 2026 - an increase of 33pc to 57pc. 

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