The findings of an initial feasibility study into the proposed route from Maroochydore to Kawana and Caloundra were made public last month by Sunshine Coast Council.

Sunshine Coast is the ninth-largest urban area in Australia and the third-largest in the state of Queensland, being home to around 271,000 people, and the population is expected to grow by 50% over the next 15-20 years.

The mayor of Sunshine Coast Mr Mark Jamieson says identifying a potential corridor is the first step towards safeguarding the alignment and drawing up a timetable for implementing the project.

Subject to feasibility and the confirmation of state and federal funding, construction could begin in 2022 with the aim of opening the Maroochydore – Kawana phase by 2025. Indicative estimates put the cost of the initial section at $A 1.3bn ($US 1.12bn) at 2012 prices and a further $A 700m for the Kawana – Caloundra phase. The total length of both phases would be around 23km.

A map showing all route options together with the full route planning and impact assessment report can be viewed on the Sunshine Coast Council website.