FUNDING of $400,000 has been secured for Tower Hill State Game Reserve planning, including a feasibility assessment of a proposed link between the reserve and the Warrnambool to Port Fairy Rail Trail at Koroit.
Member for Western Victoria James Purcell obtained the funding which he said would provide long overdue assessments of the upgrades needed at the reserve.
“Tower Hill has received limited funding over its lifetime as a tourist destination, despite attracting 275,000 visitors each year,” Mr Purcell said.
“Many of the facilities are antiquated and in desperate need of upgrade.
“This is the first step in providing Tower Hill with the infrastructure it not only needs, but deserves.”
Mr Purcell said the project would identify the issues currently faced by Tower Hill.
“It will explore opportunities for improving the ageing and limited tourism infrastructure at Tower Hill and for upgrading services to enhance the experience for visitors,” he said.
“The project will also undertake an engineering and feasibility assessment for a proposed new connection between Tower Hill and Koroit, potentially linking Tower Hill with the Warrnambool to Port Fairy Rail Trail.”
Mr Purcell said in addition to upgrades within the reserve, it was time to have a safer entrance to Tower Hill.
“If I am re-elected improving the safety of the entrance to Tower Hill will be one of my key priorities.
“This $400,000 should be the beginning of significant upgrades for Tower Hill. It will provide a complete plan for the Tower Hill precinct,” he said.
Rail trail committee of management secretary Ian Bodycoat said there was a vision to link the rail trail from Koroit to Tower Hill.
He said access was available over the northern edge of Tower Hill, from the west at the end of Anzac Avenue.
Mr Bodycoat said a trail for walkers and cyclists which would go over the narrowest section of water, potentially over pontoons, to link with the trials inside the crater.