$1.2 million tourism boost

HIGH IMPACT: Four projects including improvements to the Great Ocean Walk will receive a State Government funding boost, sharing in more than $1.2 million.

HIGH IMPACT: Four projects including improvements to the Great Ocean Walk will receive a State Government funding boost, sharing in more than $1.2 million.

The Otways coastline will receive a $1.225-million boost for tourism-focused projects ranging from a geothermal spa development to an elite sports training centre.

Western Victoria MP Gayle Tierney said the four grants totalling $1.225 million would allow tourism-focused ventures to “move to the next stage of planning, assessing economic viability and investigating their potential as high-impact regional tourism initiatives”.

Ms Tierney said the government would provide $750,000 towards the feasibility and initial development assessment of the geothermal resources that would underpin an accommodation, geothermal spa and wellness centre development near the Twelve Apostles.

“The project seeks to address a gap in accommodation supply, and develop a new nature-based wellness attraction to capitalise on the large number of visitors to the region,” she said.

Ms Tierney said $225,000 would go towards a feasibility study and business case “to assess opportunities to increase visitor numbers in the region and lengthen their stay by developing tourism product and experiences associated with Aboriginal culture”.

“The State Government will provide $100,000 towards the feasibility study and business case that will investigate the development of an elite sports facility and a public gatehouse in the Cape Otway region,” she said.

“This project will provide investment in ‘back-of-house’ elite training facilities to help meet the demand for sporting and event-based experiences in Victoria.”

A $150,000 grant will also go towards a business plan to investigate improvements to the Great Ocean Walk, in particular the Johanna Beach to Milanesia Beach Track, and the Elliot Ridge Hiker Camp to Blanket Bay Track.

“The Great Ocean Walk was the first icon walk in Victoria and the subject of a Visit Victoria marketing campaign in 2010-11,” Ms Tierney said.
“Whist the track is largely complete, there are areas where it is not ideally located to take advantage of the coastal location.

For the full story see today’s Colac Herald.

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