The Nambour Heritage Tramway project will move forward with Sunshine Coast Council yesterday (May 13) approving the allocation of additional funding.
The proposed tram will be a 600mm gauge, solar powered electric battery model. There will be no electric overhead cables and once operational, it is believed it will be the only one of its kind in the world running on a heritage rail line.
The project was last considered at the January and April Ordinary Meetings at which Division 10 Councillor Greg Rogerson sought additional time for TNTCo to examine alternative designs, cost estimates and delivery options and provide a report for review by council.
After reviewing the revised costings and multiple possible scenarios, TNTCo has provided a fixed price of $2.027 million, including allowance for streetscape embellishments, to deliver the tramway works.
A funding gap of $763,000 will be met by council through the contribution of additional divisional funds, reallocation of funds within council’s 10-year Capital Works Program and the delay of non-critical Division 10 streetscape projects.
Cr Rogerson said the original funding gap had been significantly reduced thanks to the generosity of the Thompson Foundation who had donated $1 million.
Other funding has been contributed by TNTCo ($158,000) and a $500,000 Federal Government grant awarded through the National Stronger Regions Fund.
“The project is a key component of the Nambour Activation Plan and will reactivate the heritage listed tramline through the centre of Nambour,” Cr Rogerson said.
“This will be unique and I believe there will be tram and railway buffs coming from around the world to experience what we will offer here.
“This has been a community-driven project and I thank the supporters for driving this project forward.”
The tram, which will run between the Coles Shopping Centre and Aldi, along Mill and Howard Streets is expected to be operational by 2021.
The western terminus building, near the Coles Shopping Centre in Mill St, will also host a visitor information centre.
Additional currently-unfunded stages could eventually connect the tram to the Nambour Showgrounds.
The project will be governed by a Heads of Agreement between Sunshine Coast Council and TNTCo.