Major economic spin-offs are expected across the Western Cape now that the official launch of the Cross Cape Cycling Route took place on 29 July 2016 at Barrington in the Knysna Municipal Area.
A concept route stretches from Plettenberg Bay to Cape Town and is the result of partnerships between various stakeholders, including the Western Cape Government, WESGRO, Eden District Municipality (Eden DM), Local Municipalities and the private sector. The cycling route caters for all levels of cyclists and covers a variety of terrain including: single track, gravel roads, district lines and more.
The Eden DM Executive Mayor, Cllr Wessie van der Westhuizen, who delivered the keynote, said that when he started his term he had to face the devastation of the tragic Rheenendal bus accident that took the lives of 14 primary school learners and now he ends off his term in the Knysna area again, but on a high note. Cllr Van der Westhuizen praised stakeholders for their collaborative effort to make “a dream come true”.
The Provincial Minister of Economic Opportunities, Mr Alan Winde, during his address to stakeholders and media said: “This project is about creating a bucket list of tourism destinations. It focuses on how we will attract cyclist from other parts of the world.” Mr Winde envisions that the Western Cape will become the Trail Capital of Africa, because of its diversity, friendly people and iconic mountain ranges, sea views, food and wine etc. “We are fortunate to have a driver and a game changer”, he said.
Ms Amagene Koeberg, Tourism Co-ordinator, Garden Route and Klein Karoo, had this to say about the initiative: “This Cycling Route gives us the opportunity to find ways of approaching tourism differently. Road safety, healthy communities and a culture of cycling will be the outcome of this initiative. We are privileged to live in an area that offers breathtaking views and an environment that promises a unique cycling experience. I believe and trust that this program will deliver various economic opportunities for all residents along the route “.
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