BEFORE AND AFTER: A timber bridge crossing Degalgil Creek near Nagoorin was cleaned up recently.
BEFORE AND AFTER: A timber bridge crossing Degalgil Creek near Nagoorin was cleaned up recently. Contributed

Future of Boyne Burnett rail trail reaches critical point

THE future of the Boyne Burnett Inland Rail Trail reaches a critical juncture next week when Gladstone Regional Council meets to dissect a feasibility study on the project.

It comes after last Thursday's release of results from a community survey conducted since last February.

Boyne Burnett Inland Rail Trail president Mark McLachlan was ecstatic about how the survey was received with 264 responses collected.

"That response was remarkable even though it was over 12 months," Mr McLachlan said.

"There was a lot of support there. People didn't hide anything - some people said they didn't like this or didn't like that but in general there was a pretty good support base across the community."

BBIRT had its monthly meeting on Friday with a healthy crowd of about 35 people turning up.

The group visited a timber bridge crossing Degalgil Creek near Nagoorin which recently had flood debris left over from the 2013 floods removed by rail infrastructure and salvage contractor Denpaq.

BEFORE AND AFTER: A timber bridge crossing Degalgil Creek near Nagoorin underwent a makeover recently. Bruce Richardson from Denpaq help clean up old flood debris. The bridge is part of the Boyne Burnett Inland Rail Trail.
BEFORE AND AFTER: A timber bridge crossing Degalgil Creek near Nagoorin underwent a makeover recently. Bruce Richardson from Denpaq help clean up old flood debris. The bridge is part of the Boyne Burnett Inland Rail Trail. Contributed

Mr McLachlan said the group is now waiting patiently ahead of having its 150-plus page feasibility study report discussed at the March 19 council meeting.

"I'm hoping that council will support it. I'm aware there's a couple of councillors who have questions," he said.

"The South Burnett rail trail in its first 11 months had 15,500 people on it - that's done through a counter and a lot of people who use the corridor wouldn't have gone through the counter at Wondai.

"What's available on this corridor is completely different. The tunnels in the south of the valley, bridges towards Gayndah and the area along the Lake Awoonga foreshore are all unique.

"It's a really good chance to attract and build tourism and create employment opportunities through the areas who are crying out for something new."