More funding secured for Victoria's Shipwreck Coast
The Shipwreck Coast is home to the Great Ocean Road and the Twelve Apostles which are Barwon South West’s greatest environmental and tourism assets.
Significant visitor growth over the years has led to vastly different experiences for local and international visitors. For locals traffic congestion and lack of parking and for the tourists aging observation decks ill equipped to comfortably accommodate the demand have highlighted the need for investment to address these issues for the long term. It is estimated that visitor spending to the Shipwreck Coast contributed between $712 million and $782 million in 2015.
Acknowledging the economic significance of the Shipwreck Coast to the region, the RDA Barwon South West committee prioritised the implementation of the Shipwreck Coast Master Plan and led a regional funding advocacy group to prosecute the case for investment and secure funding for the revitalisation of the Shipwreck Coast.
The group brought together representatives of Surf Coast Shire, Warrnambool City Council, Corangamite Shire, Moyne Shire, Great Ocean Road Regional Tourism, Geelong Regional Alliance (G21) and the Great South Coast and Barwon Regional Partnerships.
“We engaged all levels of government together with local and regional leaders to identify areas for economic development and highlight risks to tourism, visitor satisfaction and the environment without significant investment,’ said RDA Barwon South West Chair, Bruce Anson”
As a result of this collaboration, RDA Barwon South West has welcomed a landmark $154 million Federal contribution towards Victoria’s first city deal for Geelong and the Shipwreck Coast.
RDA Barwon South West Chair, Bruce Anson said the latest funding announcement comes after many years of strong advocacy for the Barwon South West region’s greatest assets.
The latest federal government commitment joins the Victorian Government’s commitment of $153.2 towards the Geelong City Deal in the Victorian Budget 2018/19 – which progressed the Shipwreck Coast Master Plan as well as a convention and exhibition centre for Geelong and continuing the revitalisation of central Geelong.
“The Twelve Apostles and the Great Ocean Road are not only the jewels in Victoria’s tourism crown – they’re a national treasure and this funding contribution from the Federal Government will ensure they are a world-class local and international tourist destination.”