North Burnett to Gladstone rail trail gets $330K boost
THE Queensland Government has announced that after eight years of advocating for the Boyne Burnett Inland Rail Trail, the heritage route will receive $330 000 in funding as part of a $10 million gee up for rail trails across the state.
Minister for regional development and member for Gladstone, Glenn Butcher, said the money will money will go towards funding the concept design for three new individual trails as the region bounces back from COVID-19. These will include the Awoonga Lake Rail Trail (36.28 km), the Kalpowar Tunnels Rail Trail (31.2 km), and the Burnett River Bridges Rail Trail (28.8 kilometres).
"For every dollar we invest in bike-riding, that means $5 returned in economic benefit to our region - dollars crucial as we turn the tide on COVID-19," he said.
"When we talk rail trails, we're talking jobs in construction, jobs in tourism and new opportunities for local businesses."
The Boyne Burnett Inland Rail Trail is a partnership between the North Burnett Regional Council, Gladstone Regional Council, and the Queensland Government, and will be a key factor in supporting local construction and tourism jobs.
Gladstone Mayor Matt Burnett said according to the feasibility report, a trail developed along the old railway corridor between Futter Creek and Ubobo may attract 3000 day-trippers per year. With 96km worth of sights to see along the way, the trial holds "colossal potential" for drawing many locals and tourists to this historic corridor.
"Increasing day-trippers to the region by 3000 per year will result in an injection of some $435,300 into the local economies per year," he said.
Gladstone Regional Council will lead the project, however both councils will be involved in the tender process.