An artist's impression of what the rail trail will look like.
An artist's impression of what the rail trail will look like.

First look at the new Rail Trail near Casino

PLANS for a Rail Trail have been lodged with Richmond Valley Council less than 24 hours after legislation was passed enabling the closure of non-operational railway lines on the Northern Rivers.

The Northern Rivers Rail Trail – Casino to Bentley draft master plan was put on public exhibition by the council on Friday.

Map of the Northern Rivers Rail Trail.
Map of the Northern Rivers Rail Trail.

The $7.5 million project was being fully funded by the Australian Government, under the National Tourism Icons Program.

This draft document for the 13.4km rail trail section sets out the key elements of the project, and includes design concepts for four precincts which represent important features and attractions of the trail, as well as the design of bridges and intersections, the refurbishment of heritage structures such as Old Casino Station, landscaping and planting, signage, and the importance of connecting rail trail users to the Casino CBD.

The four key destination points in the plan include:

1. Old Casino Station – also the starting point of the NRRT therefore it will include an information centre and cafe/ amenities, parking and meeting areas.

2. The Primex site provides another parking/ drop off node.

3. The ‘Bat’ tunnel, a point of interest with many opportunities to explore, including the tunnel walk, views from on top, quiet nature sounds from below, and mini train cycle experience. Further bat studies are currently being undertaken to confirm if the tunnel can

be used during the warmer months by trail users.

4. Bentley Road area – amenities and a camping ground, playground with rope climb and bridge experience over Back Bridge, also the termination point. Future link to the Lismore Council area.

Bridges have the potential for transparent floor panels in some locations.

Public feedback is sought on the draft master plan, and they can be viewed or downloaded via this link, or at each of the council customer service centres (during normal office hours) at:

Casino — 10 Graham Place Casino

Evans Head — 25 Woodburn Street Evans Head

Any person may make a written submission on the draft policy during the exhibition period, by sending it to the General Manager:

Email to council@richmondvalley.nsw.gov.au

Filling out a Make a Submission form on the council website.

By post — Locked Bag 10 Casino. NSW 2470.

By delivery to a Council administration centre — Casino or Evans Head.

Submissions close on Thursday November 12.

Further information is available from the council on (02) 6660 0300.