Fast aerodynamic diesel train blurred at speed
Fast aerodynamic diesel train blurred at speed

Games seen as key to fast rail

More than eight in 10 southeast Queenslanders want to see a fast rail network across the region, and the overwhelming majority think an Olympic Games bid is the way to make it happen.

A ReachTEL survey of more than 2,200 people across SEQ shows three-quarters believe the region's transport infrastructure is failing to keep up with demand from population growth.

The research, commissioned by the SEQ Council of Mayors, found 83 per cent support for the introduction of a fast rail service that would enable passengers to travel between Brisbane and the Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast or Toowoomba in under 45 minutes.


The fast rail routes would link with the majority of likely Olympic venues across the region.
The fast rail routes would link with the majority of likely Olympic venues across the region.


And 72 per cent say they would be likely or extremely likely to back a bid for the 2032 Olympic Games here if it brought major transport upgrades.

Brisbane Lord Mayor Adrian Schrinner, who chairs the SEQ Council of Mayors, said there was strong public support for investment in mass transit transport like fast rail.

"As the region grows, this is critical - whether we have an Olympics or not."

But it was encouraging that people saw the Games as a catalyst for accelerating the delivery of infrastructure.


"In the past, the Olympics have been perceived as a cost. People now seem to be more focused on the benefits. It's evident the community is becoming more excited by the opportunities presented by an Olympic Games," Cr Schrinner said.

The fast rail routes - plus other infrastructure proposed by the mayors such as expanding light rail on the Gold Coast and a new light rail system on the Sunshine Coast - would link with the majority of likely Olympic venues across the region.

Trains would run at 200 to 250km/h - up to 90km/h faster than current services.

Travel time to Brisbane could be halved from the Sunshine and Gold Coasts and slashed by two-thirds from Ipswich.


"Being able to move between our cities in under 45 minutes, even in peak times, makes SEQ a more liveable region for our residents and a more attractive destination for tourists," Cr Schrinner said.

Rapid rail will be a key part of a City Deal agreement being developed between the federal and state governments and SEQ mayors to priorities and fund transport, technology, development and lifestyle initiatives over the next two decades. A City deal was the number one action point from The Courier-Mail's FutureSEQ campaign last year.

Meanwhile, Logan and Redland City Councils are each working on proposals that would create whitewater venues for Olympic events such as kayaking and rafting.

Logan is working with three-time Olympian, American kayaker and slalom canoeist Scott Shipley on a feasibility study for a world-class whitewater park which it says will be "a tourism game-changer".

The council is also doing a $3.1 rebuild of Doug Larsen Park to create Australia's premier BMX freestyle facility, again with an Olympic bid in mind. BMX will debut at next year's Tokyo Olympics.

Redland is in discussions with the International Canoe federation about a possible whitewater and kayaking centre which would double as a training facility for swift-water emergency rescue crews.

And Mayor Karen Williams says they are planning an Olympic class cross country mountain biking trail.