A $100,000 upgrade of the East Gippsland Rail Trail has been completed in time for the busy summer holiday period thanks to a Federal Government grant.
Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester has congratulated the rail trail committee for moving quickly to secure a local contractor, Cranes Asphalting and Bitumen Sealing, to complete the works.
“The volunteers at East Gippsland Rail Trail do a great job upgrading and maintaining facilities for the benefit of locals and visitors to the region,” Mr Chester said.
“I’m committed to providing more opportunities for Gippslanders to enjoy active lifestyles and projects like the rail trail provide significant social and economic benefits to our region.
“I’m working to secure more funding for further improvements to local trails, walking paths and mountain bike tracks.”
East Gippsland Rail Trail committee member, Al Campbell, said the popular trail needed constant work to meet the expectations of user groups.
“It’s an iconic trail with some outstanding features along the route from Bairnsdale to Orbost, via Bruthen,” Mr Campbell said.
“This latest upgrade is on top of the new signage we have installed along with regular maintenance to improve the experience for all trail users.
“We are keen to secure further funding for maintenance and capital works that will allow more people to enjoy our trail, stay the night and boost the local economy.”
State Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, said the trail was an important part of the visitor economy in East Gippsland.
“Providing more opportunities for visitors to explore our magnificent region is critical for the growth in tourism and the jobs it can provide,” Mr Bull said.
“Well done to all the volunteers for hiring a local firm to complete this upgrade and providing an asset that encourages healthy, active lifestyles for walkers, runners, cyclists and horse riders.”