A new bike trail in the Lithgow community? That is what Lithgow City Council has advocated for at their latest council meeting.
Lithgow City Council endorsed the Hassans Walls Mountain Bike Trail Strategy which will now be placed on public exhibition.
A draft strategy for Hassans Wall Reserve has been developed with the assistance of recognised experts in the field.
In a report prepared by Senior Economic Development and Destination Manager, Andrew Powrie it states the draft Strategy details the infrastructure trails requirements, and cost to develop three purpose-built mountain biking trails at Hassans Walls Reserve.
These would be suitable for broader scale mountain biking super flow type events.
These are geared to a wide range of riders from elite to amateur racers as well as families, couples and groups of friends riding together.
"The development of the trails network in Lithgow City would create strong inwards visitation in the adventure tourism field and significantly enhance the tourism offerings available in the Lithgow destination," he said.
"If the plan is adopted it would provide a mechanism to pursue planning approvals and grant funding to deliver the concepts."
Councillor Deanna Goodsell said the report was cause for celebration.
"One of the things I find most rewarding about being a councillor is watching great services come to fruition in our community," she said.
"This is a fabulous start and a great way to diversify our community, we have the perfect landscape for it and I believe in the end it will be a good outcome for all.
"I can't wait for it to come about, build it and they will come."
But there are issues that need to be considered such as the environment at Hassans Walls.
Councillor Cass Coleman said she was worried about the environment but was happy to hear that key stake holders including the Environmental Committee will be consulted.
"I believe we need proper protection for our environment," she said.
Funding would also need to be secured for the building of the trails network and associated costs identified in the Strategy.
The access to and from Hassans Walls Reserve was Councillor Wayne McAndrew's main priority.
"For the JetBlack 24 Hour mountain bike race at Rydal there were over 300 entrants, so if we are going to have that many turn up at Hassan's Wall we need to know how they are going to get to and from the track," he said.
Director of Infrastructure Services Jonathon Edgecombe confirmed that a report on the road leading up to Hassan's would be brought to the next council meeting regarding Cr McAndrews concerns.
An amount of $60,000 has also been placed in the draft 2021/2022 budget for a Flora and Fauna Study for Hassan's Walls. This could only proceed if external funding was sourced but would be an important first step for additional Mountain Biking trail construction to proceed.
Councillor Steve Ring said he would like to see a series of tracks right across the LGA.
"We need to look on building across the LGA, not just Hassans Walls, we need to get State Forest and National Parks and encourage them to build facilities on their land too," he said.
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