Dirt roads leading into popular National Parks in the Byron Shire are to be upgraded with Council receiving $2.28 million from the Australian Government and the NSW Government’s Fixing Local Roads program.
Grays Lane will now be sealed to the boundary of the Tyagarah Nature Reserve and raised to reduce flooding. A 700m section of Seven Mile Beach Road at Broken Head will also be sealed from the Broken Head Reserve Road intersection to the Kings Beach carpark
“I’m so pleased that the NSW Government has once again provided support for the roads of the Byron Shire in partnership with the Federal Government – this time to the tune of over $2 million,” The Hon. Ben Franklin MLC, Parliamentary Secretary for Energy and the Arts, said.
“Sealing these roads is a win-win for residents – making them much safer to drive on and protecting the local environment at the same time,” Mr Franklin said.
Byron Shire attracted 2.4 million visitors last year, a record number, and many of them liked to explore the more remote beaches in the region with up to 1,150 cars a day travelling on Seven Mile Beach Road and 600 a day using Grays Lane.
Byron Shire Mayor, Simon Richardson, said the state of the roads is poor and they were not built to withstand large volumes of traffic.
“The dust generated by traffic travelling on these dirt roads in dry weather coats nearby vegetation and is a hazard for wildlife as well as people walking, driving or living on the road, and wet weather creates potholes and flooding hazards, especially on Grays Lane,” Mayor Richardson said.
“This money from the NSW Government will allow us to do major work on the roads including sealing and drainage which will make them safer, improve access for residents and reduce run-off into the national parks which is a good thing for the precious environment,” Mayor Richardson said.
Council will also be sealing a section of Minyon Falls Road which is currently a dirt road, steep in sections and becoming increasingly popular with tourists and Northern Rivers residents.
“I would like to thank Ben Franklin for his support. As a resident of the Byron Shire he knows first-hand the need for urgent work on some of these dirt roads,” Mayor Richardson said.
Major work will also be done at Rifle Range Road at Bangalow as part of the Fixing Local Roads funding. The road has become increasingly busy with the growth of housing in the area.
It is often cut off during heavy rain and Council will be rectifying the drainage issues as well as resurfacing the road.
Council will be joint funding the road works, allocating approximately $700,000 for the four projects.
Planning work on the projects is now underway.