Friday, 26 December 2014

Nice idea - just in totally the WRONG PLACE

When I say "nice idea" I'm referring to the idea of a small, one MX track, training facility for anyone who wants to learn to ride an MX bike, or to improve their riding.  That's a good thing. BUT it's still incredibly noisy - not "ordinary" noisy. Very very noisy.  Have a look at the page above on what an MX bike is.

It still involves a lot of traffic to and from the track - in the case of this one, up to 150 vehicles coming and going each day it's in operation - on narrow country roads with unsealed shoulders and through local intersections not designed for this level of traffic.  Traffic after 9.00pm on four week nights and on an unspecified number of weekends.

You'd think that this would be the sort of activity that would be sited somewhere out in the countryside where there are big properties and few houses.  Not in this case.  We've calculated that there are about 900 people living within four kilometres of the property where the track is proposed to be constructed, and more than 300 of these are under 19 years old, so mostly likely to be in school or early childhood.
--> [1] --> [2]  Can you imaging getting young children to bed with an MX soundtrack going.  Or older children concentrating on their homework.  Or shiftworkers trying to get to sleep in the evening.  That's not MX track country - that's the outer edges of a country town.
In fact the property is less than five kilometres from the Gatton CBD.

It also involves the construction and maintenance of an MX track - if you don't have any experience of MX track maintenance I'd suggest going to the Qld Moto Park website and having a look for photos of work on their tracks.  Or better still, have a look at this video for a look at a variety of MX tracks and track construction.  An MX track is an ongoing earthworks project, requiring regular "dressing" of the surface so that it doesn't develop ruts and holes that are not only dangerous but prevent riders from reaching top speeds.  When an MX track is proposed to be put adjacent to one of the least developed creeks (Redbank Creek) where it flows out of the Lockyer National Park forests, then there's every likelihood that if large amounts of sediment and other pollution doesn't get into the creek on a regular basis, it surely will when we get one of the massive rainfall events that seem to be getting more and more common lately.

Redbank Creek already floods and there are businesses (employing more than 200 people) and housing estates, all within only a few kilometres downstream who already get affected by floods from Redbank Creek.  If sediment from this development raises the stream bed or otherwise stops floodwaters from getting away there will be much more severe flooding.

So, it's not an anti-bike thing.  Hell, I rode bikes for more than 20 years, probably about eight different bikes, everything from a step-through to trail bikes and high-speed touring bikes.

[1] Sources: and Google Earth imagery and overlays to locate houses and properties within specified radii of the properties.

[2] Compiled using the 2011 Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Census Data for the localities closest in proximity to the proposed development.  Where census data is not available at the necessary scale for a locality, extrapolations have been made from an adjacent locality close to the proposed development.

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