Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Stuart Ayres MP, Member for Penrith today announced that the NSW Government will provide $1.5 million for the restoration of the historic Glenbrook Tunnel as part of its COVID-19 stimulus program.


Stuart Ayres said the funding would pave the way for reactivating the tunnel as a recreational trail, in collaboration with Blue Mountains City Council.


“This funding will help progress the adaptive reuse of the tunnel as a walking trail and tourist attraction for locals and visitors alike to enjoy,” Mr Ayres said.


“Opening the tunnel would provide a missing link connecting Glenbrook and Lapstone villages with Leonay and Emu Plains and Penrith’s Great River Walk, and contribute to an extensive network of tracks and trails in the area that will add to the region’s tourism appeal.”


The $1.5 million stimulus funding follows $600,000 previously invested by the NSW Government to clean-up part of the tunnel, and to install a stainless steel gate at the western end in 2019.


The 660-metre long brick railway tunnel, which was originally constructed in 1891 and then shut in 1913, was used for mustard gas storage in World War II amid fears of a foreign invasion.


Minister for Planning and Public Spaces Rob Stokes said the new $16.5 million Greater Sydney Crown Land Open Space Activation Program would fund upgrades to Crown land and community facilities.


“The last 12 months has taught us the importance of green open space and creating public places where people can safely meet, congregate and relax,” Mr Stokes said.


“It makes good sense that by improving Crown land and public infrastructure we can make better use of the assets we already have to create more open space for the community to enjoy.


“These projects will also support local jobs and economies with work for tradespeople and materials suppliers.”