A clear path toward economic diversification, tourism growth and a thriving city centre has been laid out today with the launch of the Geelong City Deal Implementation Plan.
Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said the City Deal would inject $370 million into Geelong and the broader Great Ocean Road region.
“Earlier this year, we outlined our promises to rebuild the tourism infrastructure in this iconic part of the world; today, we commit to the Implementation Plan to make it happen. More tourists means more jobs,” Mr Tudge said.
“This is government working at its best when the three levels come together to agree a long-term master plan.”
Victorian Minister for Regional Development Jaclyn Symes said all three levels of government were committed to achieving a shared vision for Geelong over the next 10 years through the City Deal.
“Planning can now begin on a new 1,000-seat waterfront convention and exhibition centre, set to enhance Geelong’s position as a premier city, with a revised business case and an agreed project plan due by mid-2020,” Ms Symes said.
“Revitalisation of central Geelong and the city’s waterfront under the City Deal will improve access, support tourism and enhance community activities and major events.”
Senator for Victoria Sarah Henderson said she was pleased to see a clear path forward for priority infrastructure projects in the Greater Geelong region.
“This is a beautiful part of Australia and projects under the City Deal recognise the need for world-class tourism infrastructure to ensure Geelong and its surrounds remain one of the nation’s most iconic tourist destinations well into the future,” Senator Henderson said.
“After fighting so hard to secure a City Deal including for major projects like the upgrade of Apollo Bay Harbour, Point Grey Lorne and the development of a world class coastal walk, I am delighted that we have reached this next stage in delivering these vital projects for our region.”
Mayor of Greater Geelong Bruce Harwood said with sound plans in place, a number of important infrastructure initatives can become a reality.
“This is an exciting time for the Greater Geelong region with projects under the Deal set to create employment opportunities for our growing community and attract more tourists to our clever and creative region,” Cr Harwood said
“With a finalised Implementation Plan in place, we can now move forward with key projects designed to further revitalise our CBD and waterfront, grow our visitor economy and ensure the diverse natural beauty of the region can be enjoyed by everyone well into the future.”
Initiatives under the City Deal include investment in the Geelong Convention and Exhibition Centre precinct, revitalisation of central Geelong and the city’s waterfront, delivery of priority tourism infrastructure projects along the Great Ocean Road and Shipwreck Coast, the redevelopment of the Queenscliff Ferry Terminal, expansion of Deakin University’s Geelong Future Economy Precinct, and a commitment to support Indigenous, local and social employment and procurement opportunities.