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An alternative route for the North-East rail trail will be discussed at the City of Launceston council’s Monday meeting.
In the council’s agenda it has recommended the trail run from Turners Marsh to Wyena, rather than ending at Lilydale.
Launceston North-East Railway community liaison officer Wendy McLennan said it was fantastic to see the Launceston council recommend the railway go to the Wyena border.
“We are really pleased they’ve actually taken a stand to look after the area of the line that’s in their territory,” she said.
The council’s alternative proposal recommends the rail project be extended from its Lilydale Falls to the Lilydale township, and the Dorset Council be urged to request additional funding from the state government for this to occur.
In the council’s agenda, general manager Michael Stretton has recommended the council writes to Dorset Council and the Launceston and North-East Railway to ask the organisations to work together to come to an agreement about the rail trail’s future.
For the past year, the Dorset Council and the Launceston and North-East Railway have been debating over the future of the unused tracks.
Dorset Council’s proposal included converting the railway line to a multi-recreational trail for bike riding and walking.
The rail trail would link to an existing rail trail between Scottsdale and Billycock Hill.
Volunteer organisation Launceston and North-East Railway, which operates inconjunction with North-East residents and farmers, has proposed a tourist railway run on the North-East rail line from Turners Marsh to Scottsdale.
As a result of the report, the state government’s solution was for Dorset Council to develop part of the track for a bike track, with the other part of the tracks to be used for the heritage rail service.
A 20-kilometre section of the track, which runs from Lilydale to Coldwater Creek is proposed by the government as a two-stage roll out of the heritage rail project.
The first stage of the rail trail would be from Lilydale to Turners Marsh. The second stage would be to extend the track from Turners Marsh to Coldwater Creek. The council’s next meeting will be held at 1pm on Monday.
This article first appeared on www.examiner.com.au
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