May 12, 2015
The South Burnett Regional Council has begun a five-day public consultation process to gather the community’s ideas about the proposed Kingaroy-Murgon Rail Trail.
On Monday, Council officers and rail trail consultant Mike Halliburton, from Brisbane-based Mike Halliburton Associates, mounted a display stand near the Gloria Jean’s Coffee Shop entrance to Kingaroy Shoppingworld.
They will do the same on Tuesday before holding similar “open house” meetings at Memerambi, Wooroolin and Tingoora on Wednesday; Wondai on Thursday; and Murgon on Friday.
The meetings are designed to allow residents to see artists’ conceptions of how the finished rail trail might look, ask questions about the project, and offer their own ideas about features they would like to see incorporated into the final design.
Mr Halliburton, whose company has more than 20 years experience building rail trails in Queensland, NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, also has examples of other successful rail trail projects available for the public to view at the display.
The $2 million Rail Trail project is being funded by the State Government.
Former Deputy Premier and Member for Callide Jeff Seeney announced a grant for the rail trail from the Royalties For Regions fund last July.
At present, the land that will be used for the Rail Trail is empty after the railway lines were removed in 2014. Queensland Rail is responsible for its maintenance.
After this week’s public consultation round has been completed, a fully costed plan to build the rail trail will be drawn up, along with an estimate of annual maintenance costs.
Work will then begin on the project if the plan is approved by the State Government.
Mr Halliburton said feedback from the public had been generally positive and favourable.
“A few people were concerned that Council was paying for this project, but when they found out this wasn’t the case they were happy about that,” he said.
“We also had several people say they believed something needed to be done about the old railway line, and thought the Rail Trail would be a good use for it.”
SBRC Mayor Wayne Kratzmann has previously stated that because the Tick Line crosses the Rail Trail between Wooroolin and Wondai, Council would not allow horses to use the section between Wooroolin and Barambah Creek.
This would help protect landholders in areas bordering the Tick Line from suffering potentially costly tick infestations caused by animals moving along the Trail between “ticky” and “non-ticky” areas.
But horses would be able to use section north of Barambah Creek to Kilkivan, which is entirely in the tick zone, and perhaps the tick-free section between Kingaroy and Wooroolin as well.
“However this will depend on the outcome of discussions we’ve already held with landholders in the more sensitive areas,” the Mayor said.
The Mayor has also previously said he believes annual maintenance of the Rail Trail, once built, would be around $30,000 to $60,000.
He believes this amount could be funded with no impact on Council’s budget.
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Public consultation meetings will be held at:
- Kingaroy – Tuesday May 12: Kingaroy Shoppingworld, 8:30am-5:00pm
- Memerambi – Wednesday May 13: On footpath outside One Stop Shop, 8:00am-10:00am
- Wooroolin – Wednesday May 13: In the park opposite the Post Office, 11:30am-1:00pm
- Tingoora – Wednesday May 13: Tingoora Park opposite Tingoora Hotel, 2:00pm-4:00pm
- Wondai – Thursday May 14: On footpath outside Wondai IGA in Mackenzie Street, 9:00am-5:00pm
- Murgon – Friday May 15: On footpath outside bakery in Lamb Street, 9:00am-5:00pm
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