With a current population of around 34,000, the state government has predicted a modest growth to nearly 39,000 residents by 2036. Those projections did not however contemplate the new vision for Merimbula Airport and the Port of Eden as gateways to the NSW south coast and beyond. Bega Valley Shire must prepare for change.
What the investment in the airport and port will assist in doing is unlocking access to far greater visitor numbers, generating associated employment and increasing local population. The ability to dock cruise ships, in particular, will open up the Bega Valley to potential new tourist markets should the associated tourism infrastructure and services investment follow.
The potential as a freight port cannot be understated as well with Eden’s strategic location halfway between Melbourne and Sydney being highly advantageous. What this investment will also generate is a need to reconsider road transport needs between these gateways and Bega, Canberra, Sydney and Melbourne, whilst also considering local traffic interfaces at key towns.
This Bega Valley Shire Transport Futures is Council’s vision to improve transport for residents and visitors and to both stimulate and support economic growth in a sustainable, safe and secure way; recognising the inherent importance of the region’s liveability.
The NSW Government recently released the Regional NSW Services and Infrastructure Plan, titled Future Transport 2056 Council’s Transport Futures vision is intended to complement the regional infrastructure and services plan and other relevant NSW Government plans, supporting liveable communities and a productive economy.
The taffic and transport system drives economic growth and supports residents and the community movement by prioritising investment to reduce access impediments to markets and by creating a movement network for residents that is safe, acsible and environmentally sustainable.
Without adequate planning and funding, Bega Valley Shire will fail to maximise the economic opportunities that become available. This vision is the start of the process to realise these opportunities and strengths. Without a vision, there is a potential for missed opportunities and unclear direction which may lead to reduced road safety, transport choice, and amenities for its residents and visitors.
Council’s commitment to improving the road network remains strong. External funding is critical to compliment the rate payer-based funding whilst we continue to invest in the emerging economic stimulus opportunities attached to transport network improvements. More transport funding will be sourced by:
This document is Council’s transport vision to improve quality of service, support economic growth and regional development in a sustainable, liveable, safe and secure way.
The steps expected to be undertaken following the release of this Draft Vision document include:
Have your Say by 28 February 2019
Phone: 02 6499 2222