I have long advocated for investment in walking trails and mountain bike tracks throughout the Illawarra Escarpment to provide better opportunities for people to get outside and enjoy our unique and beautiful landscape by walking, running and mountain bike riding.
That is why I am delighted to inform you the Government has responded to our long term advocacy and committed to develop the Great Southern Walk linking our escarpment with the Royal National Park as well as investment in a mountain bike network.
The $31 million dollar commitment announced in the NSW Budget on 22nd June will include:
- A signature five day walking track known as the Great Southern Walk stretching for 59 kilometres from Bulli to Botany with dedicated trails and overnight accommodation;
- A 44 kilometre formal mountain bike network linking Mount Kembla to Mt Keira, due to be completed by 2024.
Some existing trails will be upgraded as well as establishing new infrastructure in consultation with the community and the traditional custodians of the land.
This is a game changer for our region with enormous potential for driving tourism and increasing safety and accessibility for the local community. It also acknowledges the importance of developing and managing trails to protect the environment and cultural heritage in the escarpment.
I would like to thank the community for your passionate support for these initiatives and assisting me in my advocacy over the years. I will keep you informed of new developments.