90 kilometres of 4X4 tracks will been re-opened by Christmas in Tasmania’s Arthur -Pieman Conservation Area, on the island’s north-west coast.
The tracks were closed back in 2012, in a move to protect some endangered species and sensitive Aboriginal cultural sites. The closing was met with stong protests, and the area re-opening was part of a promise made by the now incumbent Liberal party.
Trudy Maluga, state secretary at the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre, has responded to the news negatively. However, the Circular Head Aboriginal Corporation has supported the move.
There will be a range of conditions that come with access to the area, aimed to protected the area and its cultural significance and heritage. Track access will be stopped during the Winter months, and some of the tracks may be rerouted.
The area is called Arthur – Pieman because it generally runs in between the Arthur River in the north, and the Pieman River towards the south. The conservation area was established in 1982, and covers over 100,000 hectares.