Unmaintained roads issue addressed

Inner Gympie is no place for an unmaintained road, like this stretch of Henry Street, councillors have been told.
Inner Gympie is no place for an unmaintained road, like this stretch of Henry Street, councillors have been told.

THE vexed issue of unmaintained roads, the ones that exist on maps but not on budget documents, re-emerged with a twist at this week's Gympie Regional Council Works and Services Committee meeting.

And the two households in the unmaintained section of Henry Street, in the heart of Gympie, are probably glad to know that councillors expressed a concern to fix their problems.

Resident Kayla Iglewski certainly was when The Gympie Times caught up with her at home yesterday.

“I totally agree,” she said, adding that she was also concerned at the lack of a sign warning Henry Street drivers that the road was about to end.

“The neighbours say it used to happen a lot but, in one case I've seen, a driver thought the road continued and nearly drove into a tree near the house,” she said.

An issue which mostly seems to affect out-of-town residents on former Forestry roads has also been a pain in her part of the street, which takes the form of a few metres of wheel tracks across what looks like a grassy park.

Mayor Ron Dyne told the meeting that the street, just across a gully from Gympie Hospital, could not really qualify as legitimately unmaintained.

He said council needed to look at “picking off” such roads one at a time, describing them as “a legacy of the past”.

He described the estimated cost of $50,000 as “cheap to fix an anomaly”.

“I'd hate to think that we're still here in 50 years time discussing unmaintained roads,” he said.

Cr Donna Neilson expressed concern at spending $50,000 of ratepayers' money “for two houses”.

Cr Graham Engeman said the access needed to be fixed because it was now “tracks across the grass”.

Committee chairman Larry Friske warned that councillors may be putting “your foot on the sticky paper”.

“There are a lot of people around the place on unmaintained roads who want someone else to pay for their problems,” he said.

Cr Dyne said Henry Street was “the longest street in Gympie, except that it is cut by Commissioners Gully”.

Cr Rae Gate successfully moved, with Graham Engeman seconding, that the committee recommend money be set aside in the upcoming council budget for the next financial year.

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