More than 31,000 mountain bike riders have flocked to La Larr Ba Gauwa Park near Harcourt since the world-class facility opened in March 2018.
Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio said the park had provided a huge economic boost to the region, with visitors spending an estimated $1.6 million locally in the first 12 months.
La Larr Ba Gauwa Park includes 34 kilometres of mountain bike trails that take advantage of the site’s stunning views and granite landscapes, located two kilometres east of Harcourt and adjoins Mount Alexander Regional Park.
A recent economic impact report found visitor numbers exceeded the initial projection of 25,000 in the first year – with $700,000 spent in Harcourt alone as part of $1.6 million contributed to the Mount Alexander economy in the Park’s first year.
More than 90 per cent of bike riders visiting La Larr Ba Gauwa live outside the Mount Alexander Region with many coming from Melbourne (40 per cent) or Bendigo (20 per cent).
The report will be provided to Mount Alexander Shire Council and the Harcourt Progress Association so they can review the data and look for ways to keep riders in Harcourt and the region for longer – creating even more economic benefits for the community.
The economic analysis used information and data from rider surveys, stakeholder interviews and car counts.
As noted by Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio
“It’s great to see so many mountain bike riders flocking to La Larr Ba Gauwa Park to test out the tracks and enjoy these new world class facilities.”
“This is a really good example of how government can work with the local community to build the infrastructure needed to showcase our environment and attract new visitors to the region.”
As noted by Member for Northern Victoria Jaclyn Symes
“Right across the state, we’re investing in initiatives that make regional Victoria an even better place to live, work and visit – and La Larr Ba Gauwa Park is providing local jobs as well as bringing bike riders from far and wide to the region.”
As noted by Member for Bendigo West Maree Edwards
“La Larr Ba Gauwa Park has always been loved by our community, so it’s no surprise mountain bike riders are loving it too.”
“With so many more visitors, the entire region gets an economic boost – putting money in the hands of cafes, restaurants, tourism and accommodation providers.”