Minister for Infrastructure, David O'Byrne, visited Kettering this morning.  He was responding to an invitation by Kettering Heart Foundation Walking Group co-ordinator, Elspeth Haughie, to view first-hand the lack of safe pedestrian access along the Channel Highway at Kettering.

The lack of safe pedestrian access along the Channel Highway at Kettering  is clearly evident as this motorist takes evasive action.

DIER has recently granted permission for Council to construct a concrete pavement on the western side of the Channel Highway between Saddle Road and Selby Road. Construction is expected to commence in April and be completed in June. The Kettering Walkers Group was instrumental in convincing Council to commit to this footpath.  Their objective in inviting the Minister to Kettering  was to enlist his support for the provision of a safe walking track between Selby Road and Oxleys Road.

Ray and Elspeth Haughie represented the Kettering Walkers Group and were ably supported by Kingborough Council's Urban Planner, Kristine Ancher. Kristine was responsble for developing Council's endorsed Kettering Recreational Walkway Plan 2010 and was able to explain the specific details of the plan to Mr O'Byrne as the group followed the prospective route from Selby Road to just south of the Ferry Road junction.

Kingborough Council's Kristine Ancher points out the need for a safe pedestrian linkage between Ferry Road and the Channel Highway

The key elements discussed were:

  • an elevated footpath be constructed over the drain between Selby Road and Corbys Road;
  • use of fill from the Ferry Road upgrade to build up and grade the land along the Old Channel Highway south of Corbys Road;
  • a section of footpath from the southern end of the armco at the Ferry Road junction to link with the bus stop at Oxleys Road; and,
  • a pedestrian refuge crossing the highway to link with the proposed footpath on the southern side of Ferry Road.

The Minister was impressed when told of the high level of community involvement in the recently completed upgrade to the Kettering Oval Track.  He wished the Kettering Community Association every success with plans to seek a Tasmanian Community Fund grant to construct a new bridge linking the Oval Track to the Little Oyster Cove waterfont via the Oyster Cove Marina.

(l to r) Ray Haughie, Elspeth Haughie (Kettering Walkers), Minister for Infrastructure – David O'Byrne, Kristine Ancher (Kingborough Council), Simon Monk (Minister's Infrastructure Adviser)

Following the Minister's visit, Elspeth said “I'm delighted with how supportive and positive he was.  It was great to have Kristine along to  explain Council's plans. Hopefully today's visit will mark another positive step towards providing Kettering with safe pedestrian linkages and bringing the Kettering Recreational Walkway Plan closer to fruition”.

Note:  A copy of the Kettering Recreational Walkway Plan can be downloaded here. (2Mb PDF)