Coast least pos­i­tive in state

Salt com­ing to speak on SEQ re­gion

Sunshine Coast Daily - - NEWS - DARYL PASSMORE

THE over­whelm­ing ma­jor­ity of peo­ple are happy with life are happy with life in south­east Queens­land and most of them ex­pect it to get even bet­ter over the next 25 years.

An ex­clu­sive poll, com­mis­sioned by The Courier-Mail, shows eight in 10 res­i­dents rate the qual­ity of life as good or very good.

That sat­is­fac­tion is evenly spread across the re­gion, with the Gold Coast slightly higher at 83 per cent and Toowoomba a lit­tle less at 72 per cent.

Look­ing for­ward, 42 per cent of south­east Queens­land res­i­dents be­lieve the over­all qual­ity of life will im­prove over the next 25 years — strongly out­num­ber­ing the quar­ter who feel it will de­te­ri­o­rate.

Bris­bane res­i­dents were the most up­beat about the fu­ture, and peo­ple on the Sunshine Coast the least pos­i­tive.

Mil­len­ni­als are the most op­ti­mistic, with 56 per cent ex­pect­ing things to get bet­ter, com­pared with just 35 per cent of Gen­er­a­tion X and one in four Baby Boomers.

The YouGov Galaxy sur­vey 1659 re­spon­dents was con­ducted as part of The Couri­er­Mail’s Fu­ture SEQ se­ries, which is ex­am­in­ing the op­por­tu­ni­ties and chal­lenges fac­ing the re­gion be­tween now and 2043 ahead of de­vel­op­ing an ac­tion plan of ideas.

The se­ries will cul­mi­nate in a ma­jor event ad­dressed by lead­ing de­mog­ra­pher Bernard Salt and in­fras­truc­ture lead­ers on Oc­to­ber 23.

The re­search did high­light wor­ries among peo­ple over some is­sues as the re­gion’s pop­u­la­tion grows by an ex­pected two mil­lion in 25 years, YouGov Galaxy manag­ing di­rec­tor david Briggs said.

“Very few ex­pect to see an im­prove­ment in con­ges­tion or over­crowd­ing,” he said.

Two-thirds be­lieve traf­fic grid­lock on the roads will con­tinue to worsen, ris­ing to three­quar­ters on the Gold and Sunshine Coasts.

Those ar­eas are also the most con­cerned about greater over­crowd­ing from hous­ing den­sity.

More than 70 per cent of coast dwellers fear it will wor­sof en, com­pared to 61 per cent in Bris­bane and 58 per cent in Toowoomba.

Peo­ple have mixed feel­ings about the fu­ture per­for­mance of the pub­lic trans­port sys­tem, with 36 per cent hope­ful of im­prove­ment, 30 per cent ex­pect­ing no change and 28 per cent an­tic­i­pat­ing it will de­te­ri­o­rate.

The bulk of re­spon­dents, 45 per cent, think the south­east’s cor­ner’s econ­omy will track along at about the same level as now, with 29 per cent an­tic­i­pat­ing some lift and just one in five think­ing it will be poorer.

Gold Coast and Toowoomba res­i­dents were the most op­ti­mistic about the econ­omy.

And nearly half of peo­ple think ac­cess to qual­ity en­ter­tain­ment, arts and cul­ture events will im­prove go­ing for­ward, build­ing on the suc­cess of Bris­bane’s cul­tural precinct and the Gold Coast’s HOTA zone in re­cent times.

Bris­bane Lord Mayor Gra­ham Quirk said: “These re­sults con­firm that Bris­bane is a great place to live, work and re­lax and res­i­dents can be as­sured that Coun­cil has a long-term vi­sion for the fu­ture.

“We are de­liv­er­ing more to see and do across Bris­bane and cre­at­ing more life­style and leisure op­tions.”

He said the coun­cil was in­vest­ing in pub­lic trans­port in­fras­truc­ture and “tak­ing real ac­tion” to tackle fu­ture con­ges­tion to get peo­ple home quicker and safer.

Deputy Premier Jackie Trad said: “Peo­ple are vot­ing with their feet and mov­ing here from in­ter­state be­cause they can see the eco­nomic op­por­tu­nity and vi­brant com­mu­nity we have here while be­ing more affordable than Syd­ney or Mel­bourne.

“It’s es­pe­cially en­cour­ag­ing to see how pos­i­tively young peo­ple are feel­ing about their fu­ture here in the south­east.

All lev­els of govern­ment, busi­ness and com­mu­nity had to work to­gether to pre­serve that great life­style by de­liv­er­ing the in­fras­truc­ture needed, fund­ing top-qual­ity front­line ser­vices and gen­er­at­ing the jobs of the fu­ture.

Photo: Erle Levey

SEC­OND COM­ING: So­cial com­men­ta­tor Bernard Salt speaking at the UDIA break­fast meet­ing at Maroochydore is com­ing back.

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