SORELL Mayor Kerry Vincent has thrown his support behind University of Tasmania’s plans to relocate to Hobart’s CBD.
Mr Vincent said for those who lived in Sorell and further out, battling distance, traffic and the daily commute was a very real and frustrating thing.
“That is why moving the University of Tasmania campus to the city centre can only help reduce the impact of this frustration on people trying to better themselves with higher education,’’ Mr Vincent said.
“Our region is one of the fastest growing in the state, which is putting significant pressure on infrastructure of all types, not just transport infrastructure but also access to amenities such as medical services and education.’’
He said the significant investment in transport infrastructure through the South-East Traffic Solution was helping.
“Including removing the Airport Roundabout, the Sorell bypass and, soon, commencement of duplication of the causeways,’’ he said.
“The State Government has also sought to address travel times and access by not only investing in new regular hourly bus services, but also a new Sorell school.
“This physical distance is also one of the reasons that Sorell High School has been extended to years 11 and 12.
“These measures will assist the region, which has low rates of retention in both mature and young students by encouraging more young people to complete their Tasmanian Certificate of Education in the first place.
“People who don’t have the pleasure of living with the daily commute and traffic jams that those of us who live in the South-East do, simply don’t understand the difference that travel times make to people’s lives and decision-making.”
“It currently takes up to 65 minutes each way on public transport from Sorell to Sandy Bay.
“This compares to around 30-40 minutes to the city. ?
“So we are talking about a potential saving of around one hour each day in commuting time, which is more than enough to make a massive difference.
“Education is an inherent right and a higher level of education leads to a better quality of life with an increase in employability, financial capacity, skills, and training.
“Recent studies have shown that up to half of new jobs created require a university degree.
“The figures show that some 43 per cent of people who live in central suburbs such as South Hobart, Sandy Bay, Battery Point and West Hobart have a university degree.
“But for areas such as Sorell, it is just 12 per cent, while travelling further out to parts of the Tasman Peninsula and the East Coast, these figures fall even lower.
“It might not seem like much, but the reduction of travel time to access education for people living in Sorell, the Southern Beaches, Tasman Peninsula or the East Coast as a result of moving the uni to the CBD will have a significant positive impact on educational outcomes.’’