Finch Hatton and Eungella gearing up for mountain bike trails

Published: 27 Apr 2022

Council is gearing up to help Finch Hatton and Eungella capitalise on economic benefits to flow from the Pioneer Mountain Bike Trails.

Proposed changes to the Mackay Region Planning Scheme are intended to help facilitate commercial and other non-residential uses in those townships.

They would also encourage a wide range of uses or adaptive re-use and reduce the levels of assessment for certain developments that would support the mountain bike project.

Examples include developments ranging from planned bars and new hotels reducing from impact assessment to code assessment, to food and drink outlets reducing from code assessment to accepted development, subject to requirements.

Today’s ordinary meeting of council endorsed the proposed major amendment to include these changes in the planning scheme, which will now undergo a state interest review.

Following the go-ahead from the State Government, the proposed major amendment would then be advertised for public consultation.

Mayor Greg Williamson said the proposed major amendment was another milestone for the Pioneer Valley Mountain Bike Project.

He said planning for the mountain bike trails, including the Finch Hatton trail head, was well advanced, with council covering off on environmental approvals, as well as locations of the trails and shuttle access roads.

“This major planning scheme work has been running in tandem with the signature Pioneer Valley Mountain Bike Trails project.

“The trails will put Mackay on the national and international map as a mountain bike destination and this will have massive economic benefits for the entire region.

“Finch Hatton and Eungella will be particularly important service cogs for visitors, and it opens up a whole range of business opportunities in those townships.

“The proposed major planning scheme amendment will ensure they are well positioned to take advantage of this unique opportunity in our Valley.”