10 years, $5M, one amazing coastal pathway
THE finishing touches are being put on an epic coastal pathway that will link Ballina to Lennox Head.
The Coastal Shared Path along The Coast Rd from Skennars Head Rd to Pat Morton Lookout is expected to be finished and open for users any day now ‒ just in time for the school holidays.
It is the final section of the project.
Ballina Shire Council's engineering works manager, Paul Busmanis, said the shared pathway was a long time in the making.
"The visions for this path have certainly been around for many years, more than 10 years," he said.
"This section that we're finishing off now is about 2km, and it's costing around $2 million.
"The cost of the more recent coastal shared path work, to in-fill the 'missing links' between existing paths is approximately $5 million, comprising: Lennox Head Village to Pat Morton Lookout (2013), Angels Beach to Sharpes Beach (2017) and Skennars Head roundabout to Pat Morton Lookout (2020).
"Once this project is complete, the council still has its walks project, which will hopefully be finished by the end of the year.
"That will be upgrading of some of the steeper parts of the walking tracks and around Boulder Beach there is a rocky section where you have to clamber over some rocks, so we will be putting in a boardwalk there.
"On the headlands themselves, where the path is grassy and mown, that will stay like that."
The Coastal Shared Path project has been developed as a major asset for the Ballina Shire community, but also as a tourist attraction.
Mayor David Wright said it was the perfect way to enjoy the "pristine coastline and riverside".
"This type of infrastructure is rare and will be a unique recreational asset for our shire," he said.