25 Sep 2017 - Letter to the Editor from Jim Mason Bellarine Candidate.
I participated in and support the Clever and Creative Future plans for City of Greater Geelong. I am sorry to say, however, we have many beautiful plans, many of which never see the light of day.
The current city plan aims to achieve community wellbeing, and to grow our economy.
A perfect activity which can achieve both aims is cycling. There is a large number of cyclists who would spend some days here and spend their money.
I met a group in Drysdale over the weekend. Their assessment was damning. They reported that roadsides are unsafe, there are few proper shoulders and the Bellarine rail trail is washed out and has not been repaired in some places for ages. There is little connectivity along the ocean coast, and safe North South connections are non-existent.
How can we expect to attract tourists when even locals feel their health and wellbeing is threatened by these conditions?
I am a member of the COGG Community Rail Trail Advisory Committee, and know that the council staff are doing the best they can.
Allocation of resources is the problem. I have ridden many rail trails and our Geelong network is not up to scratch. If we want to attract tourists, we have to bring our connectivity and safety up to world standards.