Beach bridge announced

ACCESS to the Ninety Mile Beach will be improved with a new bridge to be built at McLoughlins Beach.

Deputy Premier and Gippsland South MLA Peter Ryan announced the $750,000 project to replace the ageing timber bridge with a new structure.

“Gippsland’s Ninety Mile Beach is one of the longest stretches of uninterrupted beach in the world,” he said.

“Through the Ninety Mile Beach Access Project visitors will have safe access on foot from McLoughlins Beach to the Ninety Mile Beach and Nooramunga Marine and Coastal Park.

“Currently there is only one way to reach the beach and coastal park without a boat, which is via the ageing McLoughlins Beach footbridge.”

Mr Ryan said the current bridge would be decommissioned and replaced.

“The project includes a detailed design process to ensure that the new structure is functional and appropriate for the marine environment,” he said

The state government contributed $500,000 to the project through the Regional Growth Fund with the balance from Wellington Shire Council.

Eastern Victoria MLC Danny O’Brien said the funding for the new bridge was timely.

“The current footbridge won’t last much beyond the next 12 months, so this project is critical to ensure people have ongoing access to this natural wonder,” he said.

“This region draws thousands of visitors each year, who enjoy the magnificent waters, beautiful surroundings or a spot of fishing.

“This project is a win for the local community, tourists and the wider Gippsland region. Mr O’Brien said the project would be completed in June 2016.