Multi-million dollar port, wetlands plan

A PLAN to upgrade the Princes Highway through Sale and link pedestrian access via the Port of Sale to local wetlands aims encourage more travellers to take a break in Sale.

The multi-million dollar project has the support of Gippsland MHR Darren Chester, who said Wellington Shire Council had developed the streetscape and redevelopment concept plan.

“It’s an exciting project that will improve the amenity of York St and make it more attractive to visitors to stop and explore everything our town has to offer,” Mr Chester said.

“In addition to the highway improvements, I’m working with council on plans to provide better long vehicle parking and pedestrian links to the Sale Common.

“As part of my Active Gippsland policy, I want to see all levels of government working together to provide more opportunities for locals and visitors to access walkways, trails and bike paths to experience our natural attractions.”

Mr Chester said the final costings for the plan were still being developed, but would exceed $10 million and need federal government funding to proceed.

“Wellington Shire Council has led the way in Gippsland by applying a consistent streetscape design to major towns and improving facilities for pedestrians in the main shopping areas,” he said.

“This latest proposal warrants support from other levels of government, and I am lobbying the Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack to support this initiative.

“Our region has suffered economically through the drought and bushfires.

“We need infrastructure funding to create jobs and support growth in the visitor economy in the future.”

The proposed project includes transforming York St into an attractive and thriving retail strip to boost existing businesses and encourage new enterprises.

The River Heritage and Wetlands Trail would also be upgraded from the Port of Sale to the Sale Common wetlands, including an interpretive trail, pedestrian crossings, boardwalks and bird viewing platform, and resurfacing some sections.

The project also includes a new footbridge at the Port of Sale to reach visitor parking on the southern riverbank, where a new boardwalk and moorings are proposed, as well as new parking for long vehicles such as cars towing caravans and boats, at the Port of Sale, and new signs in the central business district and along the highway to local points of interest.