The Warrnambool harbour foreshore project is weeks away from being shovel ready, mayor Tony Herbert says.
Cr Herbert said that meant the council was ready to lobby the government for funding this year.
The council will need $11 million to fund the project which would include $3.5 million for the harbour precinct including a world-first porous boat ramp design.
Another $7.5 million will be needed for a complete makeover of the crumbling breakwater.
Funding from the state government last May covered the cost of the detailed design works of the harbour precinct, breakwater upgrade and a potential spur off the end of the breakwater.
Just whether the spur would be built would be determined by the success of the new design for the boat ramp.
"It's only weeks away from being a shovel ready project," Cr Herbert said.
"We've now got a shovel ready project that we are going to lobby for funding this year.
"We are seeing this as a real opportunity."
Last year Cr Herbert said hopes were high that the design work would be finished in time to seek funding in the state budget, but COVID-19 has now pushed back that deadline by months.
Cr Herbert said that getting the user groups to support the works was a major boost for the project.
He said it was only when the user groups "jumped on board" the council was able to secure the $700,000 to do the planning and design work for the project.
"There's no way any government is going to give any money to any project if the council's wanting one thing and the community is wanting another," he said.
In response to a question from Ben Blain about what projects the council told the government in May were shovel ready and what would they cost, council chief executive officer Peter Schneider said $12.8 million worth of projects were put forward which included the Lake Pertobe playspace renewal as well as car parks and footpaths.
Other projects included replacement of the retaining wall and stairs at Proudfoots, Albert Park maintenance facility, Wangoom Road widening and bicycle lanes, Walsh Road rehabilitation, Edwards Bridge replacement/repair, Brierly Christ Church cricket club changerooms, Bushfield Recreation Reserve improvements, South Warrnambool netball court lighting, and upgrades at the art gallery, lighthouse theatre, Fletcher Jones not-for-profit creative industries hub and the outdoor pool.
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