Happy trails: Barnett pledges $200,000 to improve bush trails

Happy trails: Barnett pledges $200,000 to improve bush trails
Happy trails: Barnett pledges $200,000 to improve bush trails
Happy trails: Barnett pledges $200,000 to improve bush trails

IMPROVING access to Bush Forever sites in Neerabup and Nowergup are among the State Election campaign commitments from the major parties.

Two days into the official election campaign Premier Colin Barnett has announced a $200,000 Liberal Party commitment for mountain bike trails in Neerabup National Park.

“Neerabup has beautiful views of the ocean, magnificent tuart trees and thriving native bird and animal populations,” Mr Barnett said.

“Mountain biking and walking have a low impact on the environment and good trails give people the opportunity to get in and really appreciate our national parks.”

Announcing the commitment at Neil Hawkins Park today, Mr Barnett said it was an opportunity for nature-based tourism within the national park, linking to the Yaberoo Budjara Heritage Trail and 10th Light Horse carpark.

Labor candidate for Wanneroo Sabine Winton recently announced a $100,000 commitment to provide access and recreation facilities around Lake Nowergup in the Neerabup Nature Reserve.

The Nowergup resident has campaigned with the Lake Nowergup/Carabooda Valley Community Group for the past eight years to protect the area and improve access for visitors.

“This little gem has been left unprotected and neglected – residents in the northern suburbs are screaming out for nature trails and public recreational space,” she said.

“The protection and enhancement of the lake and surrounding areas will create local jobs and improve visitor numbers to the area, boosting the local economy in the process.”

The Labor commitment would go towards parking facilities, visitor signage and environmentally appropriate access to the area.

According to the premier’s statement, the Neerabup mountain bike trail network would be single-track style and sensitively located, forming loop options with a combination of climbing and descending sections.

It would cater for beginner and intermediate users and will be an accessible recreation resource for families and enthusiasts.

Mountain bike riders in the northern suburbs currently have to travel to Kalamunda and the Perth Hills – a 130km round trip – for mountain bike trails.

WestCycle and the State Government invited public submissions on the Perth and Peel Mountain Bike Draft Master Plan in December-January.

The draft plan identified the Swan Valley, Jarrahdale and Yanchep as sites of moderate priority to develop trails, with 18 other sites from Joondalup to Mandurah, and east to Avon and Boddington suggested as well.

Neerabup National Park falls across the Burns Beach and Butler electorates, while Neerabup Nature Reserve is in the Wanneroo electorate.