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It would be lovely to think of jumping on a train in Wynyard to get to your job in Burnie, or vice-versa.
But short of finding about 500,000 people to move to the region, it's really a pipe dream.
The bid by Burnie resident Peter Mudford to see the rail corridor to the west become a passenger route is a noble one.
It's likely Mr Mudford remembers the day when rail travel was a regular part of life for many people.
But in the modern society, it's unlikely to ever be an option for a short stretch of coast with such a small population.
He says it may help with the dreaded Cooee Crawl. A fair bit of money has been pledged for road upgrades which our pollies are hopeful will alleviate one of the region's major congestion issues.
However, that is one that is so small compared to major centres that it is hardly likely to be the catalyst for a light rail service.
Even Hobart with a much larger population is struggling to get up a light rail service to its north.
The reality is that the rail line to the west of Burnie is worn out.
It would take a massive injection for a major customer to see it brought back to use as a freight corridor.
But that's not likely to happen in the foreseeable future.
Which is why a shared pathway is the best use for the current rail corridor.
One only had to cast an eye toward any of the current sections of the pathway during the pandemic to see how many people were making the most of it for recreation and exercise.
And completing the link to the west would make it a great asset for recreation and even commuters.
Creating a pathway should be a major benefit to both residents and tourists coming to the region. It provides a destination at either end of the pathway for those keen to ride or walk the stretch.
And the other bonus of a pathway is that it preserves the rail corridor, should modern technology and future needs mean that it can be reinstated. If it continues to sit unused it may be carved up and sold-off.
This article first appeared on www.theadvocate.com.au
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