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Byron Shire
April 21, 2021

Bangalow voters shun rail trail

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The Nationals candidate for Ballina received 355 primary votes out of 1,333 counted at the Bangalow polling booth. That is 27 per cent or roughly one quarter.

The heartland of the rail trail lobby is Bangalow. Nowhere else in the shire has there been the same amount of meetings and fundraising for the rail trail and concerted effort to convince the residents of its merit.

It is a key town in their strategy for a ‘world class product’ , so Cameron Arnold, who himself was flabbergastered at a recent Bangalow public meeting at the amount of money thrown at the rail trail project.

The National Party took a  $50 million investment into rail trail as  one of their major policy planks to the recent election.

All other major parties or independents in our electorate did not want to have the tracks ripped up for a cycling way.

Many conclusions can be drawn from this result.

One definitely cannot be drawn: that there is an overwhelming support for ripping up the tracks to make way for a cycling way. Rather the opposite. People want an alternative.

Jens Krause, Byron Bay

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  1. Read Dr Philip Laird submissions for Australian government departments about transport and especially about “steam age alignment or steam era alignment”.His papers will debunk your wanting to reuse the old and slow train corridor.
    Eumundi in QLD is a classic example of a town that had a train line running thru the heart until a a deviation was installed in the 1980s.Eumundi would not have flourished if the main train line had been still running thru the town.Bangalow will be wrecked by a noisy 24/7 train system running thru its heart.
    Station St will be clogged with cars and buses dropping and picking up passengers.
    So please read Dr Philip Lairds articles before fixing us with a “steam age alignment” for the next 130 years,we deserve a much better train system

    • I refer to Will Jeffrey in the Northern Star on the Weekend, a purportatly green, who voted for the Nats to strengthen the Rail Trail project. Following this logic of this Rail Trail activist, it did not end well.

    • Marie, it’s time to accept the people of the Northern Rivers want and need trains. It’s time to accept it and move on from the rail trail.

      • Hi Gary,
        The people you talk to want trains as do many people I talk to. There are also lots of people who want the rail trail to go ahead because they know the trains aren’t coming back.. It is really time that the tooters move on as they won’t get funding.

  2. I also put Nationals last in Ballina because of the rail trail issue, and because all the other candidates spoke out publicly that they did not support ripping up the existing rail infrastructure to make way for a rail trail. In this seat it was the defining issue for me. Sorry Marie, but as far as my vote went you are completely wrong.


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