A plan to build a cycleway from Wedderburn to Glenfield along the Georges River, is one step closer despite protests from several locals and councillors.
The idea was originally proposed by Cr Meg Oates (Labor) late last year and the details of a scoping study into the project were revealed at last night’s council meeting.
The majority of councillors eventually voted to conduct a detailed feasibility study into the project.
One of those people who spoke at the meeting in opposition to the proposal was Beth Michie, who represented the National Parks Association of NSW Macarthur branch.
“There are issues we need to get managed before we open up more (access to) bush land,” she said.
“The report doesn’t emphasis the problem we will have if we open it up for more visitors … like motorbikes, graffiti, arson – we certainly don’t want anymore of that out our way – and rubbish dumping.”
Nea Makowski – who ran for Campbelltown Council at the last election – also addressed the council.
She said she agreed with Ms Michie that the report “did not fully assess the environmental impact” of the track.
Limited surveillance, and ongoing costs of maintenance on and around the track were also problematic, Ms Makowski said.
“Council can’t even keep St Andrews Road clean,” she said.
Cr Oates said the potential positives outweighed the potential negatives.
“Everyone has this fear it (the bush land and river) may be wrecked or trashed, but we have to think beyond that,” she said.
“Many residents don’t know about it (the river) because they can’t get access to it.
“We have the opportunity to do something special for our region.”
Mayor George Brticevic said the track would provide an opportunity for kids to get outside, rather than be stuck indoors playing gaming consoles.
“It’s an opportunity for kids to ride a mountain bike or walk the track and see nature,” he said.
“There is no point in locking nature up and no one looking at it.”
Cr Ben Moroney, Cr George Greiss, Cr Ralph George, Cr Bob Thompson and Cr Warren Morrision all voted against conducting a feasibility study.