Council needs to focus on footpaths – Labor Council Team

Mayoral candidate, Tony Judge and the Labor Council Team have called for
a greater focus on footpaths in the Coffs Harbour City Council area to
improve pedestrian safety and increase mobility for elderly and disabled
residents.


Mr Judge says “There is a tendency in political campaigns to focus on big,
new policies and developments, but often the greatest benefits in local
government come from fixing the smaller problems that are an everyday
concern for residents and ratepayers. Footpaths are one of those areas
where good planning and consistent investment would improve the safety
and quality of life of so many people in our Council area.”


“All of us rely on footpaths to some extent for convenience and safety, but
they are an even greater priority for people who are unsteady on their feet or
in need of access for a mobility scooter. In their case a well-maintained
footpath can be the difference between being able to safely access their
neighbourhood and being restricted to their home. However, their attempts to
remain mobile and active are often restricted by the absence of footpaths,
poor maintenance or the lack of a safe way to cross a kerb at an intersection.
Projections show that the number of people in our area who are over 75
years of age will double in the next 20 years. Many of those people will have
mobility problems and we should be planning the right sort of infrastructure
for them in advance to allow them to have the best possible quality of life” said Mr Judge.

Mr Judge also notes that the lack of footpaths in some parts of the Council
area is a serious road safety issue. “Provision of footpaths has not kept up
with the growth in population and increased development in some areas like
the like the Northern Beaches. This often results in pedestrians sharing
narrow roads with increasingly busy traffic flows. The safety issues arising
from that shared use are growing in frequency and severity.”

Workers cementing a footpath
Picture: Port Macquarie-Hastings Council


“The lack of footpaths also results in more and more people choosing to
drive a short distance to their destination, creating congestion on roads and
the need for more parking. At a time when we should be encouraging more
walking for the health and environmental benefits, many people are being
unnecessarily forced to use a car for short journeys.”


Mr Judge says the answer lies in planning, building and maintaining good
quality footpaths across the Council area. “At a time when we are both
growing in population and ageing, good footpaths are not just desirable, they
are essential. If we are elected to Council, this will be a big area of focus for
us.”

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The above is a media release from the CHCC Labor Council Team – Monday 28 June 2021.

Coffs Coast Outlook will publish all media releases by candidates for the council elections on the Coffs Coast so long as they have legally acceptable content. Media releases can be sent to [email protected]

2 thoughts on “Council needs to focus on footpaths – Labor Council Team

  1. We are desperate for parking spaces when we go to town. Perhaps if we have footpaths some of us can walk to town and get some exercise. Heaven knows the parking problem is chronic, can only get worse, and has no promise of being addressed.

  2. Would you get Coastal Works to increase the effort to create more footpaths Tony? Would you also charge the residents who would benefit from having a footpath?
    If you want to provide infrastructure that has been needed for years where will the money come from? How much did Council make/ lose last financial year as we need to know if we can afford these footpaths Tony?

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