Gympie Council wins prestigious award

Gympie Regional Council has been formally recognised for its contribution to outdoor spaces with the Mary Valley Rail Trail winning the Queensland Outdoor Recreation Federation Government Achievement Award.

Councillor Gear said the Mary Valley Rail Trail had been one of the region’s most successful recent major projects. “There is a strong grass-roots community advocating and supporting rail trails and the outdoor opportunities they bring,” he said.”The Mary Valley Rail Trail has been one that the community has fully embraced because, at 4.7km long, it is the perfect distance for people of all ages and fitness levels.”

For more details see this media release.

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Imbil Station on the Mary Valley Rail Trail
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The Yarra Valley Trail in Victoria from Lilydale to Yering (stage 1A) is now open!

Just in time for the Christmas and New Year break, the Yarra Valley Trail in Victoria from Lilydale to Yering (stage 1A) is now open!

Stage 1A of the Yarra Valley Trail, which runs from Lilydale to Yering Station (7.5km), is now open for use.

This links with the very popular Lilydate to Warburton rail trail.

Keep a look out for interpretative and way finding signage to be installed along the trail in the New Year.

For details on the new trail entrances and car parking options, head to Ride Yarra Ranges.

Enjoy this amazing route…..

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New trail linking Lilydale to Yering (Courtesy of Yarra Ranges Council)
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Brisbane Valley Rail Trail to be Upgraded

The Queensland Government and Ipswich City Council have jointly invested in the construction of the Brassall Bikeway Stage 7.

This forms part of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail and will extend the concrete surface from Diamantina Boulevard, Brassall to Bayley Road, Pine Mountain.

Unfortunately this will result in closure of this section of the rail trails from January to April 2020 while work is done.

Thanks go to the the Queensland Government and Council for this upgrade to the rail trail.

For further information and a map of the works, please see this link.

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Southern end of section to be upgraded
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North East Tasmanian Rail Trail extension approved by parliament

Legislation to consider the official managers of the hotly debated North-East rail corridor in Tasmania has just passed parliament without any opposition.

The notice allows both bike and train organisations to move forward with their respective plans.

This is another important step towards establishing a rail trail between Scottsdale and Lilydale near Launceston.

The North East Tasmania Rail Trail currently exists between Scottsdale and Tulendeena — it is hoped that with this legistation now passed, the rail trail can now be extended from Scottsdale with the Federal Government funding already provided.

You can read the full article on North Eastern Advertiser (Scottsdale newspaper) Facebook page. Look for Rail Trail passes parliament without any oppositionpasses parliament without any opposition.

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Wonderful scenery on existing section between Scottsdale and Tonganah
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Monaro Rail Trail Draft Feasibility Study

The draft Feasibility Study for the proposed 214km Monaro Rail Trail in the south-west NSW has been complete and is on exhibition for the next 8 weeks. The Snowy Monaro Regional Council is calling on the community to provide feedback..

The report is positive about the proposed rail trail.

Check it out on the Council webpage at https://yoursaysnowymonaro.com.au/monaro-rail-trail

The Snowy Monaro Regional Council would like as many people as possible to provide feedback.

Feedback will be accepted until 5pm Wednesday 22 January 2020.

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The Bredbo Bridge is one of the highlights of corridor

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The Brisbane Valley Rail Trail has been named Public Works Project of the Year

The Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (BVRT) has been named Public Works Project of the Year at the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia (IPWEA) Awards for Excellence.

In another bid to boost rail trail infrastructure, Somerset Regional Coucil has lodged a funding application for $2.2 million to improve the surface between Esk and Fernvale.

In a media release on 30 August 2019 it is clear that the BVRT has become a great asset for South East Queensland and that the council was committed to the continued development of the trail. This investment was not only for the local community but also for Queensland and the rest of Australia.

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Somerset Regional Council Director of Operations Andrew Johnson with Engineers Australia Tasmanian Division President David Finnigan. Source: Somerset Regional Council

 

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Cyclists passing Esk Railway Station

 

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$50K for a feasibility study towards linking Seymour with the Great Victorian Rail Trail

An official Media Release from Mitchell Shire Council notes there is $50K included for a feasibility study towards linking Seymour with the Great Victorian Rail Trail (GVRT).

Mitchell Shire Council has announced there will be nearly $1 million of Government funding for the Seymour Revitalisation Initiative.

Presently there is a missing link between Tallarook and Seymour that would further open up the GVRT to greater patronage by linking it with the region’s rail and transport hub in Seymour.

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Aerial view looking towards Mansfield of the GVRT crossing Oliver’s Road. Photo by Ross Vaughan.
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Riesling Trail in South Australia extended to Auburn

An opening ceremony will be held on Tuesday 19 November 2019 to mark the completion of the Riesling Trail extension to Auburn which links it up with The Rattler Trail.

As part of that overall project, the Committee of Management are planning to unveil the signage that Rail Trails Australia has sponsored under its grants program.

Details of the opening ceremony can be found here.

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Rail trail cycling tour near Auburn
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What’s been happening on the Northern Rivers Rail Trail?

Although progress seems slow on the proposed Northern Rivers Rail Trail (NRRT) in Northern NSW, there is a lot going on behind the scenes. This includes grant funding approval, Biodiversity Reports, Landowners Meeting and the method by which the corridor land would be managed.

In addition, we undertand that the Tweed Shire Council has selected the five contractors that will be tendering for the construction of the rail trail when legislation is passed to allow construction. The council has also began preparing the branding scheme for the Northern Rivers Rail Trail.

The Northern Rivers Rail Trail organisation continue to push for development along the whole proposed route, and report that the finalisation of arrangements for release of the $7.5M Federal Government funding for the Casino-Bentley section is expected shortly.

There is a lot of funding available to begin construction of this rail trail and we hope the NSW government can proceed more quickly with the land management and legislation processes.

In August the Tweed Shire Council also released the Tweed Rail Heritage Study, which contains a lot of history of the rail line and the features to be incorporated into the rail trail. Well worth a look.

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Image from the Heritage Study of construction on the line in the 19th century

1. The Tweed Shire Council’s application to the Federal Government’s Regional Jobs and Investment Packages – North Coast (RJIP) grant program for the Tweed Valley Rail Trail (TVRT) has been successful. This is the culmination of a May 2013 resolution to actively support and promote the establishment of a rail trail on the Casino to Murwillumbah rail corridor.

Refer to Tweed Valley Rail Trail Grant Funding – report to Council February 2018 for further details.

2. North Coast Local Land Services (North Coast LLS) was engaged by Tweed Shire Council to prepare an independent biosecurity risk assessment for the railway corridor land between Crabbes Creek and Murwillumbah Railway Station, which is proposed for conversion to a shared user path (Northern Rivers Rail Trail). Key stakeholders such as local landholders, state government and industry groups were involved in the process.

The full report can be found here.

3. A meeting for Landowners was convened on 13 August 2019 to share details of the proposed rail trail and to enable them to raise any specific requirements. At this meeting the project status was presented, ie. NSW Government has commenced the process of amending the transport legislation, Federal government is continuing to fund the rail trail, Council’s Project team is continuing to refine the overall project assessment (including information gathering from this working group), and Council is liaising with State government departments about a range of technical and operational matters.

View the full presentation here.

 

 

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Increased Number of Cyclists Visit Victoria’s High Country

Victoria’s High Country has experienced a 40 per cent rise in cyclists touring the region in just 12 months, cementing the North East as one of the world’s top trail cycling destinations.

In a media release dated 23 October 2019, Minister for Regional Development Jaclyn Symes stated that an extra 40,000 cyclists visited the region in the past year.

It is estimated that some 200,000 cycling enthusiast will visit the region by 2022 to experience the region’s renowned routes and scenery.

The High Country boasts the two longest off-road rail trails in Victoria – the Great Victorian Rail Trail and Murray to Mountains Rail Trail – which run through stunning countryside and connect with towns including Yea, Mansfield, Wangaratta, Rutherglen, Beechworth, Myrtleford and Bright.

The High Country Rail Trail runs from Wodonga and follows along the shores of Lake Hume to Old Tallangatta.

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Autumn splendour at Porepunkah along the Murray to the Mountains Rail Trail

 

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Cruising on the Great Victorian Rail Trail
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One of the restored bridges on the High Country Rail Trail

 

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