Update October 2017: A recent update from the Environment and Education Manager of GORCC confirmed that public consultation on the Memorial Arch Options Paper had closed at the end of August. As per the agreed communications and engagement plan, GORCC had delivered online and hard copy surveys (English and Mandarin), letter drops, surveys at visitor info centres, and various media promotions of the project to encourage feedback. Over 200 submissions were received on the options and the consultants and the GORCC team are currently determining what the feedback indicates with respect to direction for the draft Masterplan. In due course the the Agency Working Group and the Community Reference Group will be convened to report back on the consultation results, and to discuss the direction of the draft masterplan and next steps
In the interim, GORCC have been installing temporary signage at the site to encourage visitors to use the site safely. We are also having this signage translated into Mandarin and will have additional signs in place shortly. VicRoads are working on options for a speed limit reduction to be in place for summer while the Masterplan work continues.
Feedback sought on Master Plan for Eastern View Memorial Arch
A draft Precinct Master Plan providing options for design direction and future development of the Eastern View Memorial Arch was outlined at the final meeting of the Community Reference Group held on 20 February 2017. This group, of which AIDA was a member, comprised representatives from the local community and from GORCC, DWELP, VicRoads, Surf Coast Shire, and the consultancy firm Spatial Design Studio.
The Community Reference Group, and a parallel working group – the Agency Working Group – comprising tourist, business and government agencies, were formed to provide input into a Memorial Arch Master Plan whose purpose was to develop a design and improve amenity to ameliorate future tourist impact on this area – an area already under pressure from increasing tourist numbers and limited space available for cars and buses. Predictions for future tourist numbers along the Great Ocean Road show a marked increase sooner rather than later, with increased pressure on tourist facilities along the coast. As well, studies of the potential effect of global warming and sea level rise (‘Coastal climate change vulnerability and adaptation’) have shown the area from Urquhart Bluff to Spout Creek has a high risk of inundation, storm erosion and coastal recession.
The draft plan arose from feedback from an initial survey of residents (not many responses) and meetings of the Community Reference Group and the Agency Working Group facilitated by GORCC with the designated consultants, Spatial Design. The plan details project background and purpose, lists key attractions along the Great Ocean Road, cites historical markers, visitor amenities, walks and photo opportunity sites and outlines current thinking on climate change impacts on the Great Ocean Road before outlining three options proposed for the site. Each option addresses the key concerns including:
- vehicle and pedestrian accessibility
- cultural heritage
- ecological and environmental impact
- commercial impact
- site management.
The options outlined in the master plan are detailed in their description and whilst these proposals cover the main priorities and design directions of the two groups and GORCC, other options and ideas are welcomed.
A fact sheet has been developed by GORCC and will be distributed to the Aireys Inlet and surrounding community for further consultation in the near future following finalisation of the master plan document. Full information on the options paper will be available on the GORCC website: www.gorcc.com.au
AIDA urges all members to view this document, nominate a preferred direction for the Memorial Arch precinct or put forward an alternate view – this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.