Barilaro finally on board for rail trails as boost to regional tourism
February 12, 2020

The Nationals’ have had nine long years to act on rail trails and have done next to nothing to build them. The benefits are clear. John Barilaro needs to stop the talk and get rail trails built in bushfire affected communities.

Jo Haylen, Labor Shadow Minister for Active Transport, today called on the Deputy Premier to commit to building rail trails to aid bushfire recovery in the regions.

The Deputy Premier yesterday admitted he was “considering” rail trail projects as part of the Government’s bushfire recovery plan following calls from Jo Haylen for him to commit to the projects during a recent visit to the Eastern Riverina Rail Trail in Gundagai.

Rail trails are prevalent in Victoria, Tasmania and Queensland; as well as in many overseas countries including New Zealand. Progress in New South Wales has been slow, with only one route funded between Tumbarumba and Rosewood.

“It’s good to see the Deputy Premier finally waking up to the benefits of rail trails for regional communities, particularly those needing a tourism boost following the devastating fires”, said Ms Haylen.

“Communities across NSW have shovel ready projects waiting for the go-ahead from this Government.”

Studies by SGS Economics indicate that a 50-60km rail trail would create an immediate 16 full-time jobs, while research from La Trobe University shows rail trail visitors in Victoria inject more into local economies than regular tourists, spending from upwards of $244 to $483 a day.

“That’s money and jobs NSW bushfire affected communities should be able to count on in this difficult time, but can’t,” said Ms Haylen.

“The fact is the Nationals’ have had nine long years to act on rail trails and have done next to nothing to build them.

“The benefits are clear. John Barilaro needs to stop the talk and get rail trails built in bushfire affected communities.”


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