State and local government funding has been announced to construct 12km of rail trail between Mansfield and Maindample in North East Victoria as per the following press release.
Click Here for a description, map and photos of the Goulburn River High Country Rail Trail.
A rail trail linking Mansfield and Maindample will be built with the help of a $650,000 Victorian Government grant announced today by the Member for Seymour, Ben Hardman.
Representing Regional and Rural Development Minister Jacinta Allan, Mr Hardman said the 12-kilometre section would form part of a larger 134-kilometre Goulburn River Rail Trail that, would ultimately connect Mansfield to Tallarook via Yea.
“The Goulburn River Rail Trail has been identified as a priority in the Victorian Trails Strategy 2005-2010,” Mr Hardman said.
“The Mansfield to Maindample section of the trail will link the Mansfield Tourist Precinct and the township of Maindample and connect with a 1.3-kilometre section of trail fully funded and constructed by Mansfield Shire Council in 2006.”
The project involves the construction of a shared pathway along an old railway easement. Project works include:
- Construction of a 12-kilometre compacted and rolled gravel surface;
- Replacement and/or refurbishment of six rail bridges and numerous culverts;
- Provision of visitor amenities (car park, toilet and interpretative signage) at the five-kilometre mark;
- Interpretative and directional signage for the Trail; and
- Gates and fencing where required.
Mr Hardman said the trail would significantly boost tourism in the region by increasing the range of activities for visitors to the area.
“Rail trails and pathways contribute significantly to the economic, social and recreational fabric of regional communities,” Mr Hardman said.
“An economic analysis of Victorian rail trails by La Trobe University Bendigo found rail trails helped boost the service and hospitality industries through the provision of food and accommodation.
“The study also established a direct link between rail trails and tourism, finding trails helped attract more visitors and, in the process, had the potential to create local jobs.”
Mr Hardman said the grant for the $860,000 project would be provided through the Victorian Government’s Regional Infrastructure Development Fund (RIDF) to Mansfield Shire Council, which was contributing $210,000.
“The Goulburn River Rail Trail project is part of the RIDF’s $8 million Provincial Pathways Program,” Mr Hardman said.
“The RIDF has been successful in leveraging investment to deliver vital infrastructure projects across regional and rural Victoria.
“To date the Brumby Government has delivered $422.2 million through RIDF to fund 203 projects worth more than $1.27 billion across provincial Victoria.”