Interview with Rachael Bermingham

The Mooloolaba to Maroochydore Cycleway has attracted its share of controversy of late.

Yesterday, residents of Alexandra Headlands took to the beach to protest the propose implementation of the Cycleway.

We spoke to protest organiser Rachael Bermingham about their concerns.

What’s the importance of something like this for the community?

This is very important to us because this is where we exercise, we socialise. There’s a lot of community groups that use this stretch of beach. We’ve all grown up along this stretch of beach surfing and being here. I’ve got kids now who come here as well. And the important thing is, that with the cars being removed and the developing plan that they have be saying about the barrier and the cycleway, what that actually does, it puts our families at risk. It puts the users at risk. So that they are now having to cross four lanes of traffic, a barrier way, and a cycleway in order to get to beach rather than just pull up where the grass is, get safely out of the car onto the grass, not into oncoming traffic or cyclists an then into the water, which is a very important factor.

If the come up with a design that Incorporates these concerns would you be more supportive of that?

Well the thing is, that there have been numerous meetings with TMR and every single one of the alternatives or suggestions has been falling on deaf ears. They’re just not listening to the community. Most of the community, most of the people you’ve seen here today, they didn’t even know about this. That is such a bane of contention with the community – “they shouldn’t be able to have a say as to what’s going on in their own community, and how that looks,” and TMR are just not listening to us hence the rally today.

Speaking to Joe Natoli before and it sounds like Fiona Simpsons on board.

Fiona Simpson has been very supportive of our cause.

[RB ducks off for a moment]

Apologies.

What’s the feedback from Fiona Simpson been like?

It’s very, very … She’s as concerned about number of things as what the community is. It’s really great to have her listening to us, and listening to concerns and raising those with the people that matter.

Do you know if she’s taken that to the Transport Minister or the Department?

Absolutely. There’s a petition that we’re putting in to the Minister for Transport and also a motion to Council that was put in yesterday.

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