Cycling advisory committee in the wings

Cyclists are keen to see cycling infrastructure developed in the Blue Mountains to improve safety and attract more tourism dollars to the region, and have welcomed Blue Mountains council plans to set up a cycling advisory committee.

Future plans: Members of the Blue Mountains Cycling Safety Forum see the benefits of a cycling advisory committee.

Future plans: Members of the Blue Mountains Cycling Safety Forum see the benefits of a cycling advisory committee.

Mayor Mark Greenhill was to ask Tuesday night's council meeting to vote on receiving a report on establishing a cycling advisory committee made up of community groups and interested councillors.

It followed a meeting between council and cycling groups on June 30.

Blue Mountains Cycling Safety Forum spokesman David Tritton said they strongly supported the initiative.

"We see it as an opportunity to promote cycling for active fitness and sustainable development and support for local businesses," he said.

The forum would like to see a shared pathway linking the Blue Mountains villages and separating cyclists from traffic.

They can also see the potential to open up crown land such as Glenbrook Tunnel, a disused railway tunnel owned by the state government, to walkers and cyclists, which would link trails together in Tunnel Gully Reserve and the Knapsack area, with options to stop off at Glenbrook shops.

"It would attract visitors far and wide," Mr Tritton said.

Developing mountain biking trails in the area could also be a big tourism money spinner, as was the case in Derby, Tasmania.

"They started with a $3 million investment and they are now turning over more than $20 million a year [pre-coronavirus]," Mr Tritton said.

He hopes the advisory committee will be about "getting these projects shovel ready, so we can attract funding."

"I'm really excited about this. This is an opportunity for council to start stepping into this space and look at how other governments are doing it and see their aspirations," Mr Tritton said.

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