Queanbeyan Council, working on a transport idea more than thirty years old, is keen to divert traffic away from the main street. The idea that Ellerton Drive could divert traffic around the city centre may have been valid 40 years ago, before Jerrabomberra, Googong and South Tralee were even a twinkle in the eye of their creators.
Now, Jerrabomberra is thriving, and council wants to dump thousands of additional cars per day right through the centre of this suburb. Jerrabomberra would be sliced in two, to gain a bypass that few believe will actually achieve what the Mayor and General Manager think it will.
Additional noise and traffic through the centre of Jerrabomberra are already increasing, thanks to the completion of Edwin Land Parkway (ELP), running from Cooma Road to Tompsitt Drive. Jerrabomberra residents who live along ELP are complaining about the noise that starts around 5:30 am, sometimes earlier.
Residents have been waiting patiently for a review of noise levels, promised by council after the ELP was completed. The previous review completely ignored data from the monitor most likely to show adverse noise levels. Recently, Mayor Overall said there will be no review.
A JRA survey of 26 homes along the lower section of ELP showed 17 were greatly affected by noise, while 9, whose living areas are on the opposite side of the house, were little affected. A mailbox letterdrop survey of all Jerrabomberra residents resulted in 80% of respondents saying they wanted the Dunns Creek Road option.
At least two homes were sold in the past three months because of ELP noise, and at least two homes are known to have installed dual pane windows.
If Ellerton Drive Extension goes ahead, it will destroy natural habitat and corridors for wildlife already under pressure because of other developments. It will deliver traffic from the south of Queanbeyan directly to the southern end of ELP, meeting traffic from Googong at the Cooma Road intersection.
If council gets its way, and it has a track record of ignoring the community and doing whatever it wants, the bypass will deliver thousands of additional vehicles each day into the centre of Jerrabomberra.
Many people doubt this will achieve council’s desired result, but it will add noise and congestion in Jerrabomberra and make it difficult to access the service station and shops. Even more concerning is that it will endanger schoolchildren and residents who cross the already busy ELP each day.