MITCHELL Shire Council are investigating a masterplan for Whiteheads Creek in Seymour.
Councillors officially received and noted the report at last month’s council meeting, and agreed a cohesive vision for the creek’s future management was important.
“The need for a masterplan was put to council by numerous submitters at previous budget consultations, and also during community consultation we did in regard to the Seymour flood levee,” Cr Annie Goble said.
“The concerns of the community were that it was a wasted opportunity where it was weed-infested and not particularly attractive, and that hopefully with some research … a bit more community consultation and a little bit of work we might be able to improve the aesthetic of the area.”
Cr Goble said a masterplan could also create a plan to allow water to flow more easily through the creek, as well as investigate the potential for the creation of trails along its banks.
“The Seymour Structure Plan does have embedded in it trails for public use,” she said.
“We’ve all found there has been so much more walking and bike riding through the COVID period, and I think the community in Seymour would like further work to be done on this.
“I’m suggesting we do further work to progress this project, and maybe chase external government funding, possibly to … make it a shovel-ready project and hopefully then seek to get more funding to deliver it.
“A lot of the land is privately owned, but I’m sure with sensible and sensitive communication with these landholders we might be able to work out some sort of opportunity to work together for the greater benefit of the community.”
Cr Fiona Stevens said the Seymour community had made it clear it wanted the feasibility of a Whiteheads Creek trail investigated.
“Further research into what it is we’re trying to achieve is probably the next stage, and then obviously implementation, which will probably be grant funding exploration,” she said.
“There is more work to be done and hopefully we can get a sound direction.
“It was spoken to in the Seymour Revitalisation Plan, which gave a strong message to council of the desire to have links along the creekways and waterways in town.”
Cr Stevens said it was ‘problematic’ that the area investigated covered 38 private properties, but suggested the implementation of a trail could be staged.