Construction of a new walking trail connecting Castle Hill to the central business district is now complete, with locals and tourists encouraged to pull on their walking shoes and experience Townsville’s newest walking track.
It is one of three projects completed on Castle Hill thanks to a partnership between the Townsville City Council and the Australian Government, through its Building Better Regions Fund (BBRF). The Australian Government and the Council each contributed 50:50 funding to the $3.6 million investment.
The funding went into building the new trail, a multi-use events space, and the installation of permanent light infrastructure for the highly popular HALO event.
Mayor Jenny Hill said the new walkway linked the existing public carpark located at the western end of Walker Street to Jones Street Reservoir, above ‘The Cutting’ carpark. There is also a new track connecting the existing Maidenhair Track to the Goat Track.
“Castle Hill is a much-loved landmark in our city, with tens of thousands of locals and tourists climbing it each year to enjoy the spectacular view or to exercise,” Cr Hill said. “This new pedestrian link between Castle Hill and the CBD means we are delivering yet another way for locals and tourists to explore and enjoy the hill. Innovative thinking and solutions were employed to overcome a number of complex engineering challenges with the project which caused some delays. When building an asset for the community that will be in use for the next 50 plus years, it is our job to ensure we don’t compromise on safety and quality. I have no doubt the connection will become a popular access point for the trails and experiences on Castle Hill.”
Member for Herbert Phillip Thompson said the three Castle Hill projects had the added benefit of supporting jobs as well as creating new attractions for Townsville.
“The Australian Government’s Building Better Regions Fund was created to drive economic growth and build stronger regional communities – and this project ticks both of those boxes,” Mr Thompson said. “These three projects have helped us to capitalise on of one of our city’s most recognisable assets, make Townsville an even better place to live for locals, and provided other attractions to draw tourists to the region.”
Michael Pugh from Townsville Hike and Explore said the new Castle Hill walking trail was a massive win for the outdoor walking and fitness communities.
“The outdoor community welcomes the opening of the new Castle Hill walking trail, linking one of Townsville’s iconic locations with our vibrant CBD,” Mr Pugh said. “Easily accessible, suitable for people of all ages, fitness levels and capabilities, and featuring some spectacular viewpoints along the way, this new trail is perfect for those within our community looking to build and maintain fitness levels right in the heart of our great city.”