Frequently asked questions
1. How many trails will be built?
Mackay Regional Council is building approximately 95 kilometres of single-direction mountain bike trails in the picturesque Pioneer Valley.
Stage one will be 14.5 kilometres in length and include:
- 7 “easy” trails
- 6 “intermediate” trails
- 3 “difficult” trails
Stage two will be approximately 82 kilometres in length and include:
- 4 “easy” trails
- 15 “intermediate” trails
- 5 “difficult” trails.
2. Where will the trails be built?
The stage one network will be located in the spectacular mountain ranges of Finch Hatton and stage two will stretch across Eungella and Finch Hatton and take in lush subtropical rainforest.
3. When will the trails be built?
Our trails will be built in stages. Stage one is expected to be completed this year and stage two; the remaining 82-kilometre network will follow after relevant agency approvals.
4. Who designed the trail network?
Council engaged one of the largest and most experienced mountain bike trail companies in the world, World Trail, to undertake the ground truthing of our trail network. World Trail have designed, planned and constructed hundreds of mountain bike trails across the world and take pride in designing trails that integrate and respect the natural features of the landscape.
5. Who will maintain the trails?
Council will maintain the trail network.
6. Will the trails be available all year?
Yes, unless there is a severe weather event.
7. Will the trails be used for activities other than mountain biking?
The current proposal includes single-use trails only. However, we have received requests for dual use and are considering different options. The main priority will be the safety of all trail users and keeping the quality of the mountain biking experience to international standards.
8. How do I get to the top of the trail network?
You can ride to the top via trail number one or utilise the services of a commercial shuttle operator.
9. What infrastructure is being built at the Finch Hatton trailhead site?
The Finch Hatton trailhead site is a purpose-built trailhead at the bottom of the stage one trails. It will include a car park with trailer parking, amenity blocks, pump track, picnic areas with shelters, bike wash and open recreational space. Click here to see the design.
10. Can other bikes utilise the pump track at the Finch Hatton Trailhead site? Bike Tracks Australia is designing and building the pump track at the Finch Hatton Trailhead site. The track is being designed predominantly for mountain bikes however, other bikes and scooters can utilise it.
11. Where can I find out information about supporting services i.e., accommodation, transportation, bike rentals?
Council will be building a website that contains information about the trail network and all the supporting services.
12. Who is funding this project?
The Queensland Government has contributed $500,000 towards the design and environmental assessments for stage one and council has funded the construction of stage one.
Council will be seeking funding contributions for stage two.
13. Are there any commercial opportunities associated with this project?
There are many economic opportunities for rider support services. The project is intended to drive visitation to the Pioneer Valley and surrounding areas. Visitors will require places to stay, eat, drink and service their bikes. After 10 years of successful operations, this project is expected to create 110 full-time equivalent jobs in the region and inject $18 million into the local economy.
14. Does council offer incentives to business owners?
The Facilitating Development in the Mackay Region Policy provides a suite of flexible concessions that support private investment in tourism-related business which encourage tourists to visit and stay in the Mackay region. Click here to view the policy.
15. I am interested in starting a business that supports the Pioneer Valley Mountain Bike Trail project. Who can I talk to in council?
Our Economic Development team look after business enquiries for this project. Please call 1300 MACKAY (622 529) or email email@example.com
16. I am interested in converting some of my land into an RV site? Who should I talk to in council?
Council has a self-assessment ‘RV checklist’ to determine whether you require a development application, as some grounds may not need one.
Please call our Economic Development team on 1300 (MACKAY) 622 529 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss further.
17. I am interested in operating a shuttle service for the Pioneer Valley Mountain Bike Trails project? Who should I contact? Please contact our Economic Development team on 1300 MACKAY (622 529) or email email@example.com to discuss.
18. I would like to change my land use to support the Pioneer Valley Mountain Bike Trails project. Who should I speak to in council?
Please contact our Planning department on 1300 MACKAY (622 529), email firstname.lastname@example.org or fill in our online form here. Following your enquiry, you will receive either written advice, a phone call or an in-person meeting, if required.
For more information about the pre-lodgement advice process see council’s user guide #4 ‘pre-lodgement process’.
19. How can I find out what planning layers / overlays are on my property?
You can find out the zoning of your property, and whether there are any relevant planning overlays like bushfire, landslide, or flood hazards on council’s online mapping system ‘MiMaps’. Search your property address and select ‘Mackay Region Planning Scheme 2017’ layer within the layer legend on the left-hand side of the map. Alternatively, ask our Planning department on 1300 MACKAY (622 529) or email email@example.com
20. Who is looking after the branding and marketing of this project?
Destination Marketing Store and Swell Design have been appointed to develop a marketing strategy and brand for this project.
21. Will council be providing local businesses with branding material? Yes. Once the brand visual identity manual/toolkit is ready, council will be sharing this with local businesses.
22. Is the main street in Finch Hatton going to be upgraded as part of this project?
There is a business case to undertake public realm, placemaking and connectivity improvements along Mackay-Eungella road and Anzac Parade. The purpose of the project is to ensure safe connectivity between areas of high activity and the enhancement of the public spaces for all to enjoy. A concept design has been completed and consultation will occur in late 2023. For more information visit Finch Hatton’s Local Area Planning Connecting Mackay page.
23. Has an environmental assessment been done on this project?
Council has completed an environmental assessment for stage one of this project. The report can be found here.
Council is undertaking an environmental assessment for stage two.
24. Is there a cultural heritage management plan for this project?
Council is working with our traditional owners Yuwi and Widi to develop a cultural heritage management plan for this project.
25. Where is stage two at?
Planning and investigation works are underway and will continue until 2025. Construction is forecasted to commence in 2026.
26. How can I stay up-to-date on this project?
You can stay up-to-date by subscribing to project update emails via connectingmackay.com.au/mountain-bike-trails.