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Ross Hayward - 14 June 2016

Ross Hayward, President of the Broulee Mossy Point Community Association, made the following comments in the Public Access Session at the Ordinary Council Meeting 14 June 2016.

Dear Mayor and Councillors,

The Broulee and Mossy Point Community Association (BMPCA) would like you to approve the following proposal for inclusion in the 2016-17 operational works program.

To construct a gravel shared pathway from the end of the existing Bengello pathway at the airport windsock to the North Head Camping Ground along the alignment of the airport fence. This would complete a popular and safe bicycle and pedestrian route from Broulee Village to the Moruya River.

The original coastal track between Broulee and Moruya North Head was eroded by storm seas some 40 years ago and the crossing over Bengello Creek was destroyed. In the 1980s the benefit of the coastal route was recognised by the Moruya Rotary Club and with Council assistance a bicycle and pedestrian bridge was built over the creek. The original road has been maintained to a standard to meet pedestrian and bicycle use but only as far south as the airport windsock. The remaining section from the windsock to the camping ground has ceased to exist.

There are a number of important benefits that will flow from completing the route. These include

  1. A major improvement to bicycle safety in the region as it allows cyclists to avoid the 100 kmph section of George Bass Drive when riding between Broulee and Moruya.
  2. Provision of a safe pedestrian and bicycle route for campers in the North Head camping ground to visit and use the patrolled and protected beaches at Broulee.
  3. Enjoyment of the very attractive natural bushland of high environmental significance through which the route passes. Local children, visitors, residents and tourists use the existing path from Broulee to the airport windsock for exercise and to take advantage of the wonderful environmental asset of the Bangalay forest and attractive coastline. To complete the route will be a significant tourist attraction and of considerable benefit to local residents.

BMPCA first raised this proposal with Council in 2002. Since that date Council staff has acknowledged that this proposal was worthwhile and encouraged BMPCA to raise money for its support. Councillors will be aware that the BMPCA has raised money for a number of shared pathways within Broulee village. The high priority shared pathways within the village have now been completed leaving the completion of a gravel pathway from the airport windsock to the North Head camping ground as the highest priority at this time.

The BMPCA has raised considerable funds specifically for shared pathways and in recent time specifically for this proposal. It now has in excess of $25,000 to contribute to this proposal. The route proposed follows the airport fence, it is cleared roughly grassed and regularly mown. While a review of environmental factors may be necessary we doubt it would be a major issue.

Council staff has recently raised with the BMPCA that it is proposed to extend the existing toilet block at North Broulee to provide a wheel chair accessible toilet. It has asked if the BMPCA would be prepared to contribute to some of the restoration work and improving the accessibility of the adjacent viewing area. The BMPCA acknowledges the importance of this proposal but considers it cannot allocate funds to this proposal whilst the priority for which the funds were raised was for the completion of the safe bicycle and pedestrian route to the Moruya River. If Council could include the completion of this route in the 2016/17 operational works plan with a reasonable financial contribution from the BMPCA, it is likely that BMPCA would also contribute to restoration and improvement to the accessibility of the area adjacent to the North Broulee Toilet Block.

Council's Reply

Your presentation on behalf of the Broulee Mossy Point Community Association sought funding for the off-road gravel pathway to be constructed from the northern end of Moruya Airport through to the North Head camp ground.

We congratulate the Broulee Mossy Point Community Association on its pro-active approach in fundraising toward community infrastructure such as shared pathways and we appreciate the offer to provide $25,000 toward the airport pathway project. Further to our letter dated 25 May 2016, we confirm that Council considered your request to fund these works within the 2016-17 Operations Plan at its meeting held on 28 June 2016 and I am pleased to advise that an amount of $50,000 has been provided in the budget for these works.