MP backs name game
By Nathan Evans
Noosa's trademark roundabout-managed intersections which have long been known for sending tourists into a spin, could become tourism drivers themselves if a new proposal expanded upon by Noosa MP Glen Elmes gets up.
Mr Elmes believes his proposal for the sponsorship of roundabouts by business and community groups would not only provide an easy means of naming the traffic devices, but would also create a tourist attraction that people from far and wide might travel to see.
The Liberal MP believes sponsorship money paid by adjacent business and community groups wishing to adopt a roundabout for promotion could steer roundabout shrubbery and beautification works to new, imaginative heights.
"This is about turning something we are sometimes ribbed about into a dead-set tourist attraction ? we could offer prizes for the way each roundabout looks," Mr Elmes said.
"I'm talking about signs on roundabouts that are just big enough to be easily read, not big advertising billboards or flashing neon signs, but the cost of allowing that business to have it there, will be paid direct to council which puts more money in council coffers to fund beatification works," Mr Elmes said.
"The council, with the backing of the community has made the decision that we use roundabouts as an alternative to traffic lights, they have become a Noosa icon so let's move to the next step and make the roundabouts tourist attractions."
"There are a lot of roundabouts located adjacent major businesses in Noosa, so what we should be doing is approaching those businesses," he said.
While he acknowledges Council's policy on signage may need tweaking somewhat, he emphasised the sponsorship signs would only be small, and would give sponsors naming rights for the roundabout, which he believes will assist visitors to Noosa navigate the shire's roads.
"Basically we're in love with our roundabouts in Noosa but the trouble is they are breeding like rabbits and it is becoming very difficult, if someone comes to town, to try to explain to them how to get from one point A to point B," Mr Elmes said.
Mr Elmes, who said a letter to the editor on the topic of roundabout naming prompted his sponsorship proposal, suggested trialling the idea on the shire's larger roundabouts to begin with.
His comments follow renewed debate around naming the roundabouts.
Last week Noosa Council's works and community services committee chair Vivien Griffin joined Tourism Noosa in suggesting roundabout naming may assist visitors find their way around the shire, which has more than 100 roundabouts.