The task of re opening the 6 bus stops recently closed in Bells Reach and Bellvista was always going to be a difficult battle to win. It required a loud public protest, it required petitions and Public Forums, it required a rebuff from Council and it required the support of our local MP Mark McArdle.
The best chance BeCA and this community had to reopening the closed bus stops issue was to involve the Transportation and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey. Jason Hunt local ALP Branch President and the Caloundra ALP Candidate was best positioned to contact and negotiate with the ‘powers that be’ and attempt to influence a positive outcome for residents on the issue.
Jason Hunt spent much of his recent time on the phone to his State Government colleagues discussing the unpopular decision to close 6 local bus stops and to have the decision overturned. Jason Hunt arranged for the Minister for Transport and Main Roads Mark Bailey to meet with BeCA representatives in Bellvista to thrash out a proposal which could satisfy all parties.
TMR Minister Mark Bailey believes there was some departmental misreading of the situation for local residents and the disadvantages many could have suffered.
The Minister presented a proposal to BeCA to provide a new dedicated bus route servicing Bellvista and Bells Reach.
After considering the Minister’s proposal BeCA is delighted to report the previously closed 6 local bus stops will be reopened as the major feature of a new dedicated bus route. It will be a new basic service operating 3 or 4 times daily for 5 days a week. The new bus route may still be weeks away before it is operational as discussion is required with the Contractor to ensure the required resources are available.
The BeCA Public Meeting for residents on Tuesday at 1:45pm at the Bellvista Meeting Place will go ahead as planned. The major topic now under discussion is a preferred bus timetable and other matters regarding the new dedicated bus route. Translink representatives have been invited to attend to answer questions and to record resident feedback.
BeCA thanks ALP Candidate Jason Hunt and others for all of the outstanding work to achieve this outcome. Elderly residents will no longer have to trudge long distances to a bus stop with shopping trolleys. Doctor’s appointments and the like can now be managed around the new timetable removing physical and financial stress for many Bellvista and Bells Reach residents.
It is a team win for this community and the efforts of many people. We thank Jason Hunt for bringing the situation to a positive conclusion for Bellvista and Bells Reach residents.