Make 2017 the year of Rail Trails happen in NSW*
Fostering the development of rails trails on disused government rural rail lines.
We are keen for the health, mobility, economic, heritage and community connection benefits of rail trails to be realised for people living and visiting the NSW districts and towns.
Rail Trails for NSW received a fast approval when we asked the producers if we could use their short video. The message is excellent and where you read America the same message applies in Australia.
NEWS Flash – 22.6.2017 Great News for Rail Trails in NSW today..!
The NSW Upper House passed amendments almost unanimously (35 FOR and only 2 against) to the ‘TRANSPORT ADMINISTRATION AMENDMENT (CLOSURE OF RAILWAY LINE BETWEEN ROSEWOOD AND TUMBARUMBA) BILL 2017’ the supported amendment – which gets the process RIGHT for this and future rail trails, ensuring these valuable routes are retained in public ownership for generations to come.
Rail Trails for NSW are happy to see two of the main processes occurring:
a) people in towns and districts with potential rail trails gathering local support and documenting the feasibility and design requirements of the potential rail trail in their community.
b) collaboration across governments and the relevant Ministers on the policy settings, application processes, legislative requirements regarding specific disused lines and funding opportunities.
What has been happening recently.
November 2014 – January 2015: from our various visits to communities with potential rail trails Rail Trails for NSW are aware of at least six submissions drafted waiting for the details of the submission process and terms.
February 2015: NSW Trade and Investment representatives hold consultations regarding the EOI . http://www.trade.nsw.gov.au/business-and-industry-in-nsw/assistance-and-support/regional-tourism-infrastructure-fund
March – April 2015: EOI submissions close and period for supporting documents to be submitted closes.
June 2015 NSW Minister for Regional Development announces outcome of intial EOI process for Tumbarumba – Rosewood Rail Trail proposal. NSW Government provides funding for the pilot RT in NSW in Tumbarumba.
August 2015 Committee meeting involving a range of NSW Gov’t departments (Industry, Destination NSW, Lands, Transport, Agriculture etc) the shire council and a representative of the RT group to develop relevant policy eg such as biosecurity related to tails in NSW.
2016 Site visit to Tumult-Batlow RT group; Advocacy forum held at NSW parliament House
2017 Advocacy to finalise the multi-department committee re the pilot RT and push for legislation to be tabled
NSW Regional Infrastructure Grant Funding – attendance a briefing sessions with several RT groups have made submissions
Site visit to Tumbarumba and meeting of regional RT teams
Rail Trails (RTs) are shared-user paths along unused railway corridors. The tracks are removed and replaced with road base, gravel or a sealed surface. They can be used for walking, cycling and horse riding. Motorised vehicles, apart from mobility scooters and wheelchairs, are excluded.
NSW is the only state in Australia that does not have Rail Trails.* With your help, we can change this.
NSW has the advantage of hundreds of kilometres of unused, but well-preserved, railway corridors. These corridors will enable the development of a world renowned system of Rail Trails. Buildings and infrastructure on these corridors have fortunately been left intact, making them ideal heritage lines for walkers, bike riders and local health groups.
In 1994, a great Victorian initiative saw construction begin on the first Rail Trail in Australia. Since that time, every state in Australia, except NSW, has embraced the concept with over 100 active Rail Trails being commissioned. About 150 Shire Councils and community groups have been involved to help make this happen. Many RTs have 3 Councils working side by side to bring it together. NSW is the only state with no RTs built on a former government line*.
The small rural township of Lue, near bustling Mudgee in NSW, currently has heritage listed buildings which are unoccupied. Developing Rail Trails, which could run through such a township, would ensure a new thriving community with new business opportunities and tourism exposure.
*Does not include Rail Trails built on non-Government lines