Interesting article from The Sydney Morning Herald about the future of railways and rail trails in NSW, although it is disappointing to hear claims that we are “threatening to derail” rail trail development, especially as we have been a part of this community for over 30 years and have already contributed many millions of dollars into the local economy over this time.
We have always been fully supportive of the development of a rail trail in the Monaro under a shared model that realises the potential of both proposals and results in the best possible outcome for our region.
We also think it is important to note:
🔹 While not widely publicised at the time, our future plans for the development of the railway corridor between Cooma and Bombala have been in development for many years and are not a “more recent proposal”.
🔹 Our development plans augment the current tourism offerings in the region by providing a year-round, all-weather attraction that is accessible to a very diverse tourist market.
🔹 In addition to the money that we estimate that we can bring in to the local economy, we are developing new employment opportunities in the region, with up to 13 new full-time positions across administration, trades and maintenance by the time we reach stage four.
🔹 The cost of ongoing maintenance and operation is entirely funded through revenue generated by the Cooma Monaro Railway museum and tourist train operations, and does not require ongoing operational funding from government or rate payers.
We look forward to continuing our collaboration with all parties involved to develop an amazing asset for our region.
Steam trains v cyclists: advocates fight to repurpose old train tracks