Mukinbudin Walk Trail

  • Investment in exercise equipment encourages the community to use the walk trail.
    Investment in exercise equipment encourages the community to use the walk trail.
  • In a hot climate, opportunities to exercise are limited. The walk trail provides a shady place to walk or jog around.
    In a hot climate, opportunities to exercise are limited. The walk trail provides a shady place to walk or jog around.
  • Mukinbudin Walk Trail
  • The walk trail provides an unstructured way for people of all ages to exercise.
    The walk trail provides an unstructured way for people of all ages to exercise.
  • Mukinbudin Walk Trail
  • Mukinbudin Walk Trail map
Introduction

The Shire of Mukinbudin's Walk Trail is an example of how shared facilities provided in response to community expectations can increase physical activity in a community. There are approximately 800 people in the central wheatbelt Shire of Mukinbudin and they were motivated to invest in a Walk Trail after excellent local community support for the statewide Western Australia’s Giant Walk Guinness World Record Challenge.

Description of project

Local community members and seniors groups contacted the Shire expressing an interest in securing facilities that would improve the health of the community. The group did not want the new facility to focus on the existing organised sporting activities in the Shire, but to provide an alternative. 

Currently, Mukinbudin has a comprehensive range of sporting facilities: an Olympic-size swimming pool, grassed football oval, indoor netball, basketball and cricket facilities, all season tennis courts, badminton and squash courts, hockey oval, beach volleyball, bowling greens, dirt kart track, 18 hole golf course and pony club.

Community interest in an alternative form of physical exercise has seen the existing Botanical Trail, which links with existing services, upgraded to provide a new and improved Walk Trail.

The Shire's objectives to provide an alternative to the existing well organised sporting facilities was supported by an investment in infrastructure.

  • Water fountains for users, including water bowls for pets, benches and exercise stations were installed along the length of the walk trail. 
  • Four exercise stations and benches were constructed at key locations to support increased stretching and physical activity. 
  • Signage was installed for easy and convenient recognition of the 4.6km trail.
  • The Shire produced maps and held community events to promote the Walk Trail. 

 

Some basic rules, such as no vehicles or motorbikes on the Walk Trail, ensured a safe pedestrian environment.

 

Due to the investment in infrastructure and promotion, walking groups now run annual events such as the Bike-a-thon held along the Walk Trail. A greater number of community members are now enjoying the health benefits of increased physical activity.

Project team
  • LotteryWest
  • Mukinbudin Planning and Development Group
  • Mukinbudin Wildflower Society
  • Shire of Mukinbudin
  • Western Australian Government Physical Activity Taskforce
  • Western Australian Local Government Association
Project cost

$33,700 (including $11,200 Local Activity Grant funding)

Values

The Mukinbudin Walk Trail is an example of how Local and State Government agencies can work together for the benefit of a rural community. This project not only demonstrates the benefits of sharing facilities, it also has a number of other health, economic, environmental, social and use benefits.

Health value
  • The Walk Trail has seen an increase in the number of adults who are physically active for at least five days a week, for 30 minutes a day. In particular, Seniors are provided with an opportunity to recreate in a safe manner without the requirement of formalised sporting activities. 
  • The Walk Trail has raised the awareness of a healthy lifestyle through providing alternative physical activity options which complement and link to the existing organised sports facilities.
 
Economic value
  • The Walk Trail adds to a number of existing tourism attractions in the district, bringing a more diverse range of visitors to boost the local economy. The Walk Trail complements attractions such as Beringbooding and Elachbutting Rock, Yanneymooning Hill Reserve and Wattoning Historical Site, thus encouraging tourists to spend more time in the local community. 
  • By taking an existing walk trail and adding specific infrastructure, the Shire has been able to encourage pedestrian activity and effectively provide a greater range of physical activities to the community.
Environmental value
  • Signage provides education to the community and trail walkers regarding the rare and endangered flora species in the district. 
  • Mukinbudin regularly experiences temperatures between 31°C and 33°C during the summer. The provision of water fountains and benches on which to rest along the walk trail is essential to encourage sustained physical activity throughout the year.
 
Social value
  • The Walk Trail takes in a number of significant local sites. Beginning at the tourist information board, the trail connects to public conveniences, the railway station, recreational grounds and the Mukinbudin Recreational Club, the golf course, Botanical Walk, Historic Grain Silo, the Men's Shed, gift shops and cafe. 
  • Mukinbudin is a proud Tidy Town. The Shire Council, and Planning and Development Group and the Tidy Towns Committee have initiated several projects. Mukinbudin has won the Tidy Towns Competition nine times in its division and in 1994 was the State Winner, representing Western Australia in the National Titles. Rubbish bins along the Walk Trail reinforce the commitment to Tidy Towns.
  • The Walk Trail links the community with its local heritage such as a historical grain silo, constructed in 1949 by a local farmer. LotteryWest and Co-operative Bulk Handling provided funds to preserve the silo and move it into the town in recognition of the importance of the grain growing industry to the district and the initiative of the Mukinbudin pioneers. The Walk Trail guides walkers past the new location for the silo in the town site. 
  • The Walk Trail includes places of local interest. It links to a Botanical Walk, which is dedicated to the Kalamaia Aboriginal and Pioneer Women of the Mukinbudin District.  
Use value

 

  • Wheatbelt communities traditionally have a strong culture of organised sport with investment in recreational centres. Sport is the social centre of the community and is a significant contribution to sense of place and pride. The Walk Trail provides an alternative way to exercise while integrating with the existing infrastructure. 
References

Shire of Mukinbudin Website, Places of Interest. Sourced on 2 January 2013 from:  http://www.mukinbudin.wa.gov.au/

State Government, Department of Sport and Recreation. Be Active. Sourced on 2 January 2013 from:  http://www.beactive.wa.gov.au/assets/files/Local%20Government/PDF%20WALK%20MAPS%20-%20Shire%20of%20Mukinbudin%20walk%20map.pdf

Type of project
Infrastructure
Scale of project
Local Area
Location
Regional