The ‘missing link’ along the Bellarine Peninsula’s iconic foreshore coastal trail was filled today, with the official opening of a new pedestrian bridge over St Leonard’s Creek.
Prior to construction of the new bridge, pedestrians and cyclists were forced onto the roadside verge creating a potential public safety hazard.
Member for Bellarine and Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water Lisa Neville, said the new pedestrian bridge means trail users now don’t have to walk along the roadside to cross the creek, improving safety and providing for a more natural coastal experience.
Works were completed by the dedicated Bellarine Bayside Foreshore Committee of Management, with joint funding provided from the Victorian Government’s Public Safety on Public Land grants program.
The bridge spans seasonal camp areas Number 3 and 4 and adds to the enjoyment and visitor experience of campers with increased level of service and amenity value.
The new bridge design accounts for existing catchment and coastal hazards and materials used allows for relocation of the bridge if and when coastal erosion occurs.
In addition to the bridge, works have included the installation of a gravel shared pathway linking to the existing coastal trail, coastal fencing to protect vegetation, bollards to define the pathway and tables and seats for the enjoyment of reserve users.
The works complement recent coastal protection works undertaken by DELWP between St Leonards pier including a beach renourishment, 'anchoring' timber groyne to capture net sand drift from the beach renourishment, coastal erosion protection works either side of the timber groyne.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water Lisa Neville
“The need for the pedestrian bridge was flagged by the St Leonards community during a workshop run by DELWP to determine location of the St Leonards beach renourishment.”
“This is a great example of the work done in partnership between the Victorian Government and the Bellarine Bayside Foreshore Committee of Management, who have restored and enhanced the Northern Bellarine environment for the benefit and enjoyment of local communities, holidaymakers and visitors”
“Bellarine Bayside Committee of Management are listening to the community and are making a greater investment into the improvement of on-ground foreshore amenities and coastal experiences for the enjoyment of local communities and campers alike.”
Reviewed 10 February 2021