Three new Rocky bike paths worth $16.6m under construction
Three new shared bike and walking paths are being constructed in Rockhampton and are due to be complete by mid-year.
The infrastructure is meant to encourage physical activity and improve road safety.
The new paths will be located at:
- Jellicoe Street to Prospect Street, worth $6.16 million)
- Neville Hewitt Bridge to Musgrave Street, worth $6.6 million
- Carlton Street to Yeppoon Road, worth $3.3 million
Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack said work on the $16.6 million projects began in April and was part of the jointly-funded $293 million first tranche of the Road Safety Program for Queensland announced in January 2020.
“On average, every dollar invested in cycling infrastructure will return nearly five dollars in economic benefit to Queensland, with improved health outcomes, reduced traffic congestion and lower transport costs whilst also creating employment opportunities during construction,” he said.
Member for Rockhampton Barry O’Rourke said the shared paths would connect the south of Rockhampton to Parkhurst in the north.
“This investment in walking and bike riding is great news for Rockhampton,” he said.
“Walking and riding can reduce the risk of serious illnesses like heart disease, type two diabetes, high blood pressure and obesity.
“That’s why we’re also working on a feasibility study with Rockhampton Regional Council to develop a new rail trail from Mount Morgan.”
Member for Keppel Brittany Lauga said the paths would help locals wanting to stay healthy and attract tourists who want to explore the region by bike or on foot.
“Bike riding and walking are amongst the favourite pastimes in the electorate of Keppel,” she said.
“I’ve been advocating for new and extended pathways for years and that’s why I’m particularly keen to see the Carlton Street to Yeppoon Road section included.”
Queensland Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said there was a specific focus on biking and walking upgrades to complement Bruce Highway projects.
“Whenever we plan major road upgrades, we look at how we can also improve facilities for bike riders and pedestrians too and these three projects are an example of that policy at work,” he said.
“We know that the best way to encourage more people to ride bikes is to build safe and better connected pathways for them to ride on.”
Member for Capricornia Michelle Landry said the Federal Government’s Road Safety Program was meant to reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries on roads.
“This program will provide an estimated 35 per cent reduction in fatal and serious injuries to help reduce the $30 billion annual cost of road trauma on the economy nationwide,” she said.
“The funding supports the fast roll out of lifesaving road safety treatments on rural and regional roads and greater protection for vulnerable road users, like cyclists and pedestrians, in urban areas.”
For the Rockhampton projects, the Federal Government committed up to $226.7 million, and the Queensland Government $64.6 million.