The original Brisbane transport plan was authored by Wilbur Smith* and implemented by Lord Mayor Clem Jones.
Their idea was to build freeways in Brisbane as the Americans had done in Los Angeles.
The Southeast freeway was built. It destroyed Woolloongabba and the multicultural community that lived there: Russians, Greeks, Italians …
The current mayor, Graham Quirk, put out a contract on houses at Lytton Road East Brisbane. Hitman and removalist, David Wright, accepted and made a cool $500,000.
For example Humbug’s Folly, a circa 1895 house was removed from Lytton Rd as part of the Lytton Rd Upgrade Project for the sake of an extra two lanes on Lytton Rd.
The law of the jungle applies. Concrete jungle.
Here is an engineer’s report on opposition to the Wilber Smith plan in the 1970s:
“The Markwell Street Bridge was scaled down to a two-span I-beam bridge and opened to traffic in 1978. It raised Markwell Street up so a motorway could pass underneath, but that motorway has never been built. Train commuters may see this bridge which is located between Bowen Hills and Fortitude Valley railway stations.”
“In preparation for the construction of the southern approaches to the Markwell Street bridge, about five houses were demolished. Protesters endeavoured to block the demolition and because of some degree of violent behaviour the police were called. [The violence he speaks of came from the police].
This sort of behaviour had been occurring in the United States, but was new to Brisbane. It foreshadowed, however, much greater community opposition to urban freeway projects that was to come later.”
A green ban must be placed on Lytton Road East Brisbane. Any worker be they clerk, bus driver, cleaner, building worker, wharfie, gardener or librarian should respect the lives of people most affected by the Brisbane City Council’s decision to put a thoroughfare through East Brisbane. This is not just the road but a land grab by developers.
trucks make ‘Midnight Mayhem’
homes taken, live
channel 9 and channel 10 cameras their witness
no more level playing field
no more fields
commuters watch as crowbar
and sledgehammer do their work
old people left a village on the isle of Rhodes
to make a life
worked hard in Golden Circle pineapple factory
educated their kids
only to have their home taken by blackhearted councillors
council is showing how they define spoils, justice to Greeks
a siege of roads quirky conquers our soil rosemary, lemon tree, prickly-pear dwindle in smoke
young people laugh and mock
not yet hit hard by cruel fate
live to fight fight to live!
*Wilbur Smith and Associates was a American consulting engineering firm from New Haven.
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*Industrial - Master/servant relationship. The power of boss over worker.
*Ownership - The struggle of indigenous people for land rights and social justice in Australia. Rights to country, right to city.
*Political - The class question. Who should govern? Who owns the means of production? Why and how?
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