17 January 2022

Improvement plan for Tathra Headland precinct open for feedback

| Albert McKnight
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Wharf Plaza

The draft concept plan’s Wharf Plaza would link existing walkways to the Tathra Wharf with a pedestrian priority shared zone. Photo: Bega Valley Shire Council.

The draft plan to improve the Tathra Headland precinct, which hosts the community’s much-loved icon the Tathra Wharf, is open for public comment.

The NSW Government awarded Bega Valley Shire Council $7.81 million to put towards two parts of the project: the restoration of the wharf and a plan to improve the headland.

The draft precinct plan for the Tathra Headland states it aims to improve travel links, traffic circulation, car parking, visual amenity and viewing corridors, as well as enhance the visitor experience.

Council’s project manager Amelia Souter said it aims to capture the gentle pace of the coastal town.

“The key feedback we received (from stakeholders) was that while the headland provides walkable distances between attractions and businesses, people generally feel the precinct is unsafe for pedestrians and sometimes difficult to navigate for drivers, particularly on Wharf Road where cars and pedestrians use the same small road, with no formal delineation,” she said.

“The plan aims to address these issues through a number of smart improvements that make it easier and safer for everyone to use the headland, whether you require accessible parking, are walking or cycling, are going fishing or scuba diving, or walking with children or elderly family and friends.”

READ ALSO Call for community feedback on plans to restore Tathra Wharf

The precinct covers from south Bega Street, heading north-east to around the Headland Park and car park, as well as Wharf Road and around Cliff Park.

Proposed road changes include creating a one-way loop starting at the service lane that runs past the town hall and post office, with this section partly made to prioritise pedestrians, that then returns along Bega Street past the Tathra Hotel.

Draft plan entry

The draft plan’s idea of the entry into the service lane with a yarning circle, town hall, shops and parkland connected by a pedestrian-friendly shared zone. Image: Bega Valley Shire Council.

Wharf Road would become a shared zone with pedestrian priority, while car parking would be restricted to reduce the risk from rockfall and erosion.

Car parking across the precinct would be formalised and improved with the overall number of spaces retained.

The plan would ensure the network of pedestrian paths was connected and would create a new three-metre wide shared path connecting to this network along the service lane to the headland car park.

A plaza would be created at the end of Wharf Road in front of the wharf and there would be a new sealed trail to Tathra Beach along Cliff Park.

READ ALSO Tathra Wharf recycled into a new future following monster seas

The draft plan also recognises the headland’s importance to the area’s traditional owners, the Djiringanj people, such as how it contains middens as well as the new burial site for the 800-year-old remains of two men that were unearthed near what is now the newsagent in the 1960s and sent to museums until they were repatriated in 2013.

It proposes to install a yarning circle and cultural garden as places to share knowledge.

Those wanting to give feedback can look at the precinct plan and complete a short survey on council’s website by 9 February.

It is expected the plan will be finalised in April, then council will begin applying for funding for it from May.

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