Dr Alec McHarg, pictured here with Andrew Fraser, NSW State Parliament Member for Coffs Harbour, after their discussions about an alternative Coffs Harbour Bypass proposal.
This proposal represents the work of Ray Wedgwood, a Civil Engineer and former Chief Bridge Engineer with DMR/RTA NSW, (now Roads and Maritime Services NSW), who consults in the area of sustainable bridge design and road transport link solutions. Ray is a former Captain and Dux of Coffs Harbour High School and therefore has a strong connection with Coffs Harbour.
The discussions was a result of several meetings between Ray Wedgwood and Dr Alec McHarg, (PhD). It is because of Alec’s involvement in the design and use of urban space and its impact on people’s health and lifestyle and their shared vision in creating sustainable transport links that Alec sought a meeting with Andrew Fraser on behalf of Ray.
This is at a time when the Coffs Harbour Bypass project does not appear to be going anywhere at this point in time. It will be the final link in the Pacific Highway to be completed, as RMS claims it has already provided dual carriageways through Coffs Harbour. Unfortunately, it may well be that perhaps it will not be built in the foreseeable future. This is despite the work of Andrew Fraser who has dedicated a lot of time and effort to try and obtain a committed project start date.
The solution proposed by Ray Wedgwood is environmentally viable, economically and socially beneficial for the region. Ray also suggests that his preferred route choice could be nearly half the cost of other proposals.
Efficient transport links between major cities such as Sydney and Brisbane, coastal and inland regional centres, are essential not only in economic terms but for the socially cohesive qualities of regional Australia. With the cost restraints to our economic future centred on inefficient distribution channels between population centres, such limitations also have a negative trickle-down socio-economic impact on the health and lifestyle of people and especially in regional areas.
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