Opening of the Toogoolawah section of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (QLD)

There will be an official opening of the Toogoolawah section of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail by Wayne Wendt, MP Member for Ipswich West, Chair of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail Steering Committee and Cr Graeme Lehmann, Mayor Somerset Regional Council.

Join them all for sausage sizzle breakfast from 8.30am and the unveiling of the Toogoolawah trailhead at 9am to commemorate 40 years since the last steam train travelled the Brisbane Valley Rail line and to recognise the valued support of the local community in the development of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail.

Just repeating:

  • Saturday 28 November 2009
  • Toogoolawah Station Grounds, Cressbrook Street Toogoolawah.
  • 8.30am – sausage sizzle breakfast
  • 9am – official proceedings
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Warburton Trail Maroondah Hwy Bridge Announcement (VIC)

Artists impression of new bridge (subject to final design)

Hooray! The contract for construction of the bridge over Maroondah Highway to join the two sections of the Warburton Trail has been awarded to BMD Constructions.

The expected date of completion is 6 October 2010 with on-site activity starting around April or maybe sooner, as BMD are already engaged in pre-construction activities.

So, riders, walkers and local residents, keep October next year free for a grand opening event for this long awaited link on one of Victoria’s most popular rail trails!

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Wahgunyah to Rutherglen Rail Trail (VIC) – Community Event

Bring your family with the bikes down to the Rutherglen Wine Experience in Rutherglen to celebrate the opening of this new section. Ride the 8.8km Rail Trail for the first time!

The Rutherglen Rotary Club is supplying a sausage sizzle and drinks to feed and water the hungry bike riders.

A best dressed bike competition for the children will be happening, with great prizes so dress up your bike and ride on down!

Where: Rutherglen Wine Experience, 57 Main St, Rutherglen

When: Sunday 29 November, 10.30am

For more information on the Murray to the Mountains Rail Trail click here for the trail description.

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Reminder: Railtrails Australia 2010 Calendar

Railtrails Australia is pleased to announce its 2010 calendar is now available.

The calendar features photographs of rail trails from around Australia. The twelve full page colour photographs show the variety that Australia’s rail trails offer – whether riding beside a steam train on Victoria’s Bellarine Peninsula or past grass trees in the Western Australian bush.

Click here for further information.

You can order online for only $16 including postage (within Australia).

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Clare Valley Riesling Trail Northern Extension Open (SA)

The long held dream of having the Riesling Trail extend the full length of the internationally recognised Clare Valley Wine Region GI has been realised. The Clare to Barinia northern extension was completed during early Spring 2009.

The 9 kilometre extension has cost well in excess of $200,000. Cost of construction was partially funded by grants from:

  • South Australian Tourism Commission
  • Dept for Trade and Economic Development
  • Northern and Yorke Natural Resource Management Board
  • Clare Valley Winemakers Inc
  • local service clubs, and assistance from local contractors.

The Office for Recreation and Sport and the Dept of Environment and Heritage have both provided encouragement for the Trail extension construction.

The extension now provides a walking and cycling Trail following the former railway line for 34 kms from Auburn in the South to Barinia in the North, traversing rolling hillsides, vineyards and farmland, with Loop Trails to wineries and other Clare Valley places of interest.

The Barinia extension passes through the northern vineyards of the Clare Valley and then into agricultural land – a major source of produce in the early days of South Australia’s settlement, as well as currently. New Loop Trails are also planned for that part of the Trail.

Recognition of the trail locally, nationally and internationally continues.

  • Locally The Northern Argus has continued to provide valuable coverage.
  • The support of the SA Tourism Commission through Clare Valley Tourism Marketing in promoting the Trail has been invaluable.
  • As well, the Trail features heavily in a new booklet of cycling trails in South Australia produced by The Advertiser in conjunction with Bicycle SA.
  • We at Railtrails Australia thank the Riesling Trail Management Committee for their recognition of our work in promoting the trail.

Approaches have been made to the Office for Recreation & Sport, Bicycle SA and Council seeking their agreement to a rerouting of the Mawson Trail away from White Hut Road and onto the extension.

Adoption of an upgraded cycle plan for the township of Clare and the integration of the trail as a major component of this development are being pursued.

The Riesling Trail, maintained by volunteers, caters for all ages and levels of fitness. It is both pusher and wheelchair friendly. Many charity rides/walks, as well as recreational users, utilise the Trail – the benefits to users and the local community are many.

See the trail description for more information about the Riesling Trail.

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Loddon Mallee Iconic Trails Strategic Plan Survey & Workshops (VIC)

Nine local government authorities in the Loddon Mallee region of Victoria, along with the Victorian State Government (Regional Development Victoria, Department of Planning and Community Development, Department of Sustainability and Environment, Parks Victoria and Department of Human Services), have funded a Strategic Plan to identify potential regionally significant or iconic trails in the region (which includes Woodend, Castlemaine, Maldon, Bendigo, Inglewood, Boort, Echuca, Cohuna, Kerang, Swan Hill, Mildura, etc).

A company called Communityvibe has been contracted to undertake this project. As part of the project, they are hoping to find out information from people who have used iconic walking, cycling, mountain biking, horse riding and canoeing / kayaking trails in the past so that they have a better understanding of their interests, motivations and needs. They are also keen to find out what type of attractions (e.g. Murray River, historic towns, Aboriginal culture, bush land, etc) may encourage people to use any regionally significant trails in the region. It would be very much appreciated it if you could take some time to do this survey if you have used iconic trails in the past.

As part of the Loddon Mallee Iconic Trails Strategy Plan, there will be a number of workshops around the region to gather ideas from people about potential regionally significant trails. A workshop about cycling trails / mountain bike hubs will be held on Monday 16 November at Woodend Hub, Cnr. Forest St and High St, Woodend from 7.30pm-9.00pm.

For more details download this document (366 Kb).

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Proposed NSW ‘Rail Trails’ Legislation Amended

Tumbarumba Railway Station can once again be a part of community life when the Riverina Highlands Rail Trail is constructed. The local council and community groups have obtained funding and in-kind support to construct the first 21 km from Tumbarumba to Rosewood when the legislation is passed. Railtrails Australia (2009)

As noted in an earlier news item, in September 2009 the NSW Transport Minister, Mr David Campbell, introduced legislation into Parliament to enable the construction of rail trails in NSW on disused government railway lines.

The minister has shown his genuine support for rail trails by amending the legislation to address sections that caused significant community concern. The amendments will mean:

  • the actual corridor land itself will not be able to be sold (only old tracks and sleepers etc on the corridors), and
  • nothing will be able to be done to an old line unless train services have ceased for over 15 years ago.

This legislation is a vital step in allowing NSW communities to enjoy the benefits of rail trails like those in all the other states and overseas. And there are some wonderful rail trails proposed that when developed will be able to be enjoyed by all Australians. Refer List here.

Once again, now is the time for all rail trail supporters to contact the government, opposition parties and the media, and express your support for the development of rail trails on disused rail corridors NOW.

Contact:

Minister Campbell and thank him for having the courage and foresight to introduce this legislation and listen to community concerns.

The shadow Minister for Transport, Ms Gladys Berejiklian

The Greens’ Ms Lee Rhiannon MLC

The Greens support an expansion of cycling infrastructure and retention of rail corridors.

The leader of the Nationals in the upper house Mr Duncan Gay MLC

We understand the Victorian Nationals have been long-term supporters of Rail Trails and bicycle infrastructure in regional communities and would hope that the NSW Nationals can do the same.

The corridors, which local groups have been working on for many years to have rail trails developed, have been disused for at least several decades. Using a corridor as a rail trails ensures that what is left of them now is preserved (some have already been cut by development). The legislation specifically allows for a rail service to be restored should the need arise.

The following documents were provided by the Transport Minister’s office.

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Volunteers wanted for bridge decking work on Timboon Rail Trail (Vic)

The refurbished piles and braces await the new decking and handrails. Photo credit: Thais Hardman, June 2009

After two years of work restoration of the 183m long heritage listed Curdies River bridge on the Camperdown to Timboon Rail Trail is almost complete. A significant portion of the work has been voluntary.

At the end of October work will start on the final phase, the decking. The Committee of Management is putting a call out for volunteers who could give one or two days to help with this as they want to work for two continuous weeks to get it laid. If you are interested or know of anyone who might be interested please contact Thais at thais@aussiebroadband.com.au.

Please note Railtrails Australia has no connection with this work and interested people should ascertain for themselves the condition of the work with the Camperdown to Timboon Rail Trail Committee of Management. Also note that it will be heavy work.

The next issue of Rail Trail Connections will have a detailed article on the restoration to date.

Click here for more information on the rail trail.

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NSW Rail Trails Can Take a Step Closer With Your Help

The rail corridor near Gundagai has been disused for several decades and could again serve the community as the proposed Murrumbidgee Valley Rail Trail. (Jan 2009)

On the 23rd of September 2009 the NSW Transport Minister, Mr David Campbell, introduced legislation into Parliament that will enable the construction of rail trails in NSW on disused government railway lines.

At the moment this is prohibited so this legislation is a vital step in allowing NSW communities to enjoy the benefits of rail trails like those in all the other states and overseas. And there are some wonderful rail trails proposed that when developed will be able to be enjoyed by all Australians. Refer List here.

However the legislation is facing opposition, critically in the upper house. Now is the time for all rail trail supporters to write to the government, opposition parties and the media, and express your support for the development of rail trails on disused rail trails NOW.

Write to Minister Campbell and thank him for having the courage and foresight to introduce this timely and necessary change.

Write to the Greens’ Ms Lee Rhiannon MLC

The Greens support an expansion of cycling infrastructure and retention of rail corridors.

Write to the leader of the Nationals in the upper house Mr Duncan Gay MLC

We understand the Victorian Nationals have been long-term supporters of Rail Trails and bicycle infrastructure in regional communities and would hope that the NSW Nationals can do the same.

The corridors, which local groups have been working on for many years to have rail trails developed, have been disused for at least several decades. Using a corridor as a rail trails ensures that what is left of them now is preserved (some have already been cut by development). The legislation specifically allows for a rail service to be restored should the need arise.

The following questions and answers were provided by the Transport Minister’s office. A link to the proposed legislation follows.

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Brisbane Valley Rail Trail (QLD) – Community Information Session

Toowoomba Regional Council will be providing support for the volunteer efforts on the day with Muster at 9 AM at the Yarraman trail head.

The working bee will focus on clearing of the Yarraman trail head and old station grounds, repairs to the Yarraman weir walk and trails linking the BVRT.

Extending the BVRT to Yarraman will ensure the local community will reap the rewards of this valuable community asset and tourist attraction.

Lunch will be provided at the Yarraman Heritage Centre for all the volunteers who will help restore damage to the trail as a result of the January flooding.

Everyone is welcome to attend however we ask that you please send an email to Kristen.Stewart @ dip.qld.gov.au so we can prepare your BBQ lunch!

  • Where: Brisbane Valley Rail Trail/Yarraman Weir Walk trail head – Millar St.
  • When: Friday 11 March 2011.
  • Time: 9 AM – 12 Noon.
  • What: Trail Working Bee.
  • Bring: Walking shoes, hat, sunscreen, gloves, rake, shovel, drinking water and as many helpers as you can find.

Lunch will be followed by an information session presented by the department of Local Government and Planning regarding Brisbane Valley Rail Trail and the opportunities the trail will provide the local Yarraman community.

For more information please visit the website at www.brisbanevalleyrailtrail.org.au.

A big thank you to the Toowoomba Regional Council and the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail steering Committee for their support of the this community recovery event.

See also our Brisbane Valley Rail Trail description.

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