More people are pounding the pavement after long-requested lighting was recently installed along the Great River Walk from Jamison Road to Nepean Avenue.
The major safety boost to the popular walk could also be extended with the project coming in under budget.
Federal Member for Lindsay Melissa McIntosh announced the $1 million funding in 2019 and said she is pleased to see it completed with the assistance of Penrith City Council.
“It was part of my 2019 election commitments. It was something Council put forward and I really supported as we know how much people love doing the River Walk plus there are even more groups doing it like the men’s walk and women’s walk which support mental health,” Ms McIntosh said.
“I am really pleased to now see it delivered and hear from people that the lights are doing their job and how it is making people who do the walk at night feel safer.”
With the Nepean River attracting people from all around the area, Ms McIntosh said there may be the potential to add further lighting.
“We committed to the installation of 30 lights and Council actually delivered that under budget so they have put in a request with the Department to extend the project and put more lights along towards East Bank,” she said.
“I am waiting on an update from Council on how that it is going but an extension of more lights seems like a good thing to do.”
Funded as part of the Federal Government’s Community Safety Package, the work was completed by local company Hix Group.
Ms McIntosh said she was pleased with the result, which will allow people to walk more safer at night along a part of the River Walk that was traditionally very dark.
“It just shows that working together with Council and community members to put these lights in can make a real difference to people’s lives and I am really passionate about healthy living,” Ms McIntosh said.
“You see young parents walking with their kids, mums pushing prams or people wanting to walk after work as the sun is going down or before they go to work when the sun is yet to come up.”
Penrith Mayor Tricia Hitchen, who also saw the need for safety measures, said it is a great outcome for the community.
“There were a lot of requests for it so I was really pleased when the Federal Government promised that they would fund it,” Cr Hitchen said.
“The feedback I’ve had is that it is amazing to have the lights there and more people are walking now because they feel safer.”
A graduate of Western Sydney University, Emily covers Local, State and Federal politics for the Weekender, as well as crime and general news.