Brisbane Airport BUG Inc has been campaigning for pedestrian access to be retained to the General Aviation Precinct of Brisbane Airport for almost two years. They met with the Brisbane Airport Community Aviation Consultation Group (BACACG) in March 2017 and had some media interest in their campaign. They also wrote to the Federal Transport Minister, ran a petition on Change.org and a petition to the Federal House of Representatives which sadly was rejected.
Now pedestrian access has been cut off. People can no longer walk the short (18 minute) walk from the public transport stops at the domestic terminal to their workplaces at the General Aviation Precinct because walking through the new underpass on Dryandra Rd has been banned. There is no public transport to this precinct so it means people who work there must own a car now. The workplaces affected include the Royal Flying Doctor Service, TOLL freight, GAM and others.
Brisbane Airport Corporation (BAC) have stated in a recent correspondence: “Pedestrians will not be permitted in the underpass due to the significant security and safety risks. Cyclists, though not encouraged, will be able to ride through the Underpass using the wide shoulders, but as you are aware there is no dedicated lane linking to or in the underpass”.
We don’t believe the safety and security risks for people walking are more difficult to design for than for people in motor vehicles. Many other airports around the world have managed to allow pedestrian (and bicycle) access through taxiway underpasses including, Frankfurt, Calgary, Manchester, Guangzhou and Schiphol Airport (pictured).
Maurice Blackburn Lawyers have been kind enough to write to the Brisbane Airport Corporation, with copies to the Federal Transport Minister and the Minister for Cities regarding the removal of pedestrian access to the General Aviation Precinct.
When the world is facing a climate crisis and Australia has health crisis of diseases related to physical inactivity, preventing Queenslanders who work at the General Aviation Precinct from walking to their workplace shows poor corporate responsibility by the Brisbane Airport Corporation.
The General Aviation Precinct is not the only precinct at Brisbane Airport which has no provision for cycling and walking. It is however the first precinct which specifically prohibits pedestrian access. However it seems BAC are having some difficulty trouble stopping pedestrians judging by the many signs they have had to put up along the route.
We may not win this one because the Federal Government will not force the BAC to abide by the 2014 Brisbane Airport Masterplan which lists initiatives to be introduced between 2014 and 2019 as: “Improve active transport facilities at the airport” and “encourage employees to use alternative modes” as well as “Expand the active transport network across the airport and “Improve footpaths, aiming to improve pedestrian connectivity between key precincts” (Ch 12. pages 262 and 269).
But even if we do not win back pedestrian access, we’re determined not to let corporations get away with this irresponsible behaviour without calling them out.