Council puts paths plan out for community consultation

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Council puts paths plan out for community consultation

Mount Gambier City Council has drafted a Shared Path Masterplan outlining future needs to improve connectivity and shared pathway networks throughout Mount Gambier.

The community is invited to review the document and provide feedback by mid-March.

Council’s City Infrastructure general manager Barbara Cernovskis said the draft masterplan had been created to provide council with a framework to increase accessible, active transport throughout the city through improved connectivity and shared pathway networks.

“Our Rail Trail is a great example of a successful shared path for pedestrians and cyclists to travel across the city,” she said.

“Council wishes to further expand on this type of infrastructure and continue to improve accessibility.

“We aspire to be national leaders in the space of shared paths and active accessibility and that is why it is so important to adopt a deliberate, planned approach to delivering a quality infrastructure network within our city.”

Ms Cernovskis said the draft Shared Path Masterplan was developed in conjunction with Tonkin Engineering and considers footpaths and dedicated cycling paths that can be utilised by a variety of active transport users such as pedestrians, cyclists and people with mobility restrictions and scooters.

“Quality infrastructure improves connectivity and increases participation in active transport which reduces reliance on motorised forms of transport and is good for health outcomes.

We want to motivate people to be active and good infrastructure that makes people feel safe and separated from traffic assists with that,” she said.

“To identify the community’s current and future needs and inform the Shared Path Masterplan, council sought initial input from residents, stakeholder groups and visitors through a digital mapping exercise, survey and a series of workshops in 2023.

“Walkers indicated that improving footpaths was of high importance to them, followed by prioritising pedestrian safety.

Meanwhile, cyclists would like to see additional dedicated cycling paths in the city.”

The draft Shared Path Masterplan is open for public consultation at until March 15.

Community feedback will be consolidated within the final draft document to be presented to council for endorsement in April 2024.

At the February council meeting, council also endorsed recommendations from the CBD Accessibility Audit for inclusion in the Infrastructure Asset Management Plan.

“The audit identified the challenges and opportunities for improved accessibility throughout the CBD, a high traffic area for pedestrians and people with mobility restrictions,” Ms Cernovskis said.

“Identified challenges included the need for ongoing infrastructure upgrades on kerb ramps and footpaths, compliance with new and updated standards and addressing visibility and maintenance issues related to pathway obstructions.

“We will address the challenges in our Infrastructure Asset Management Plan, including retrofitting work where required and adopting new infrastructure standards and methodology for all future works.

We will also continue to maintain awareness of all compliance requirements and associated inspections.”

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