June 20, 2017
Toowoomba Regional Council is investing more than $300,000 into Yarraman’s parks and streetscapes over the next 12 months.
The council will also be working with the Department of Transport and Main Roads to carry out upgrades along Toowoomba’s section of the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail between Yarraman and Nukku Road.
The streetscaping, park and rail trail projects are some of the first outcomes from the “Moving Yarraman Forward” community plan.
The plan came out of a survey run by the Yarraman Progress Association in late 2014 to determine what residents felt were the town’s top development priorities.
The survey results were discussed at a well-attended public meeting held at Yarraman Memorial Hall in February 2015, and the ideas that came from that meeting were then translated into a final plan adopted at a second public meeting not long afterwards.
This community plan was then presented to Toowoomba Regional Council (TRC) so it could be used by the Council to help guide future investments in the town.
Parks and Environment portfolio leader, Cr Joe Ramia, said on Tuesday he was proud of TRC’s ongoing investments in Yarraman, which last year included a $164,000 makeover of the Yarraman Library.
“Council is dedicated to supporting our regional towns and our injection of more than $300,000 over this and next year into Yarraman’s streetscape and parks is testament to the value we place in them,” Cr Ramia said.
“Council is completing works at Yarraman Weir Park with a toilet to complement the upgraded picnic settings and bollard installations.
“There is also an interpretive shelter being built at Station Park to enhance these popular parks, and the Yarraman and District Progress Association secured an additional $50,000 through the Tarong Community Partnership Fund to assist with this project.”
Cr Ramia said the council would continue to work closely with the Progress Association to complete the works and acquit the grant.
In addition to the park upgrades, more than 250 trees have already been planted along several key streets around Yarraman and in Station Park to address a long-standing concern that a town built on the timber industry had almost no trees in its streets.
“We have focussed on enhancing Yarraman’s streetscape and are on the final stage of tree works on Toomey Street, which includes replacing trees and improving the surrounding garden beds with timber edging,” Cr Ramia said.
The council has also started installing a new barbecue and shelters at the Errol Munt Recreation Reserve to enhance the family friendliness of the relocated, upgraded play area.
Rail Trail improvements will include track surface maintenance, erosion control, new signs and a real-time counter to collect data on trail usage, which will help inform future maintenance and improvements to the popular trail.
Terry Reid, who spearheaded the drive to create the Moving Yarraman Forward community plan, said he was “absolutely delighted” with the Council’s upgrades to the town.
“It’s been a lot of hard work, but I think it’s wonderful,” Terry said.
He expects Toomey Street will be lined with new trees within a few months. The variety that’s been chosen will display pink blooms most of the year.
Other tree varieties which played an important role in Yarraman’s early development will also be planted in the town.
The $147,000 interpretive shelter that will be built in Station Park will create a new railhead for the Brisbane Valley Rail Trail, which can offer campers somewhere to park their vehicles while they take their bicycles or horses along the trail.
Terry said both the TRC and Stanwell Corporation had been “incredibly supportive” of the Progress Association’s community plan, and the Council recently held it up as a model for other Toowoomba Regional towns and villages to follow.
“I believe Yarraman has a great future in front of it if we work on developing tourism, and the streetscaping and interpretive shelter developments are both part of that,” Terry said.
“Our next major aim is to develop an RV-friendly short stay camping area, the same as every other South Burnett town,” he said.
This week the Progress Association also previewed a major upgrade of the town’s long-standing Yarraman.Net website.
The upgrade was carried out by fellow Progress Association member Helen Mead, and it lists all the attractions in the town and immediate district, local businesses, Yarraman’s history, and upcoming events.