MT LOUISA PLAN WINS SUPPORT
A PROPOSAL to open Mount Louisa to recreational users has secured overwhelming support from the community.
The Townsville Bulletin has been flooded with hundreds of comments on its Facebook page praising the proposal.
Townsville City Council will seek community feedback on the plan to develop the Mount Louisa area to be used for activities such as walking, cycling and hiking.
Fitness enthusiast Anne Miller, of Kirwan, said the idea of opening up Mount Louisa to recreational use was positive.
“I love exercising, and I love getting outdoors, so it makes sense that Townsville has a variety of outdoor exercise options,” she said.
“Castle Hill is a great location for recreational use but examining other options is important as well.”
Ms Miller, who works at Townsville Hospital, said safety and accessibility were important considerations.
Townsville athlete Sam Stedman said the city was home to many great trail networks.
“It is positive that the council is looking at expanding an already fantastic trail network,” he said.
“Giving residents and tourists the opportunity to exercise in a variety of different outdoor locations in the city makes sense.” Mr Stedman, who has been racing in endurance sports for the last 10 years and is the owner of Outer Limits Adventure Fitness, said if the council decided to go ahead with its plan, he would like to see custom- built bike trails.
“The adventure sport industry is huge and is gaining more fans with each year,” he said.
“Developing Mount Louisa for recreational use would have significant tourist potential as well.
“It would be another drawcard for people to visit Townsville but it would mean that locals get spoiled for choice in terms of options for outdoor exercise.”
Cr Hill said the proposal would be examined thoroughly before a decision was made.
“Castle hill is being loved to death. We have known for a long time we needed extra areas for recreational users. We have talked about Mount Louisa, Mount Low and Mount Stuart,” she said.
“So we will finish the master plan for Castle Hill and we will begin the process for Mount Louisa. We’ve got to engage with the community on Mount Louisa.”
Cr Hill said Mount Louisa, with its elevation, natural environment and views, offered a great opportunity.
On the Bulletin’s facebook page, Sandy Campbell said: “An excellent idea if council can do it properly.”
Estell Lee agreed, posting: “What a fantastic initiative – I hope this gets funded.”
Clayton Linning called for the council to “just make it happen”, while Elizabeth Zanetti said that “it should have been done 20 years ago”.
Details of the consultation format will be released soon, with the council to seek feedback from stakeholders such as developers, landholders, fitness groups and clubs.