Report shapes future view of Dunkeld

VIEWS of Mount Abrupt will be protected as industrial sites are introduced to Dunkeld as part of the first large-scale vision for the Grampians township. 

New commercial, residential and industrial zones have been earmarked in a lengthy independent report for Southern Grampians Shire Council. 

Director of shire futures, Michael McCarthy, said the detailed blueprints will give certainty to developers eyeing the township. 

“Dunkeld is the fastest growing small town in south-west Victoria and it’s about the town’s potential,” Mr McCarthy said. 

“It’s about the structure of the town and there’s a number of new zones. We’ve allowed for industrial zones which will allow more employment growth. We’ve introduced some commercial zones to encourage development.” 

Land around Dunlop, Adams, Templeton and Parker streets is proposed to be converted into business zones. 

New homes could also take shape on land north of Taylor Street, while rural living zones have also been added to the fringes of the township. 

Land between the Grampians National Park and the Wannon River would also be protected under a rural conservation zone. 

Mr McCarthy said smaller items were also included in the panel report. 

“There’s a lot of recommendations to get things like footpaths along Salt Creek,” he said.

There are no large planning applications before council but there are proposals for more homes. 

Mr McCarthy said the shire wanted to boost Dunkeld’s ability to cater to tourists. 

The 73-page report says the town can expand past the existing “high-end” tourist market, such as the town’s Royal Mail Hotel, and offer more diverse tourism experiences. 

Any large-scale industrial development will also be located so as to avoid spoiling views of the Grampians and Mount Abrupt. 

“There is development proposed but we want to make sure that we protect the visual amenity,” Mr McCarthy said. 

“We’re putting all the sheds away from blocking people’s view.” 

The structure plan goes to a council vote on December 11 before going to the state planning minister to be signed off. 

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