Bullock Island Development Incorporated (BIDI) has put together a 25-page document outlining its proposal and strategy to cater for and enhance Lakes Entrance as a visitor destination.
The document, titled A Lakes Entrance Development Plan: Incorporating Bullock Island, Jemmys Point and Other Potential Projects, details BIDI’s strategy to increase visitors to Lakes Entrance and the Gippsland Lakes, create self-funded attractions, assesses increased revenues generated by the strategy, use of the best of existing infrastructure and vision for employment opportunities with acceptance of the strategy.
The group, led by locals Peter Jones, John Munns and John Butler-Cole, says its not a direct competitor to the Lakes Entrance Action
Development Association (LEADA), however wants to challenge the group when it comes to decision making. BIDI says its regular blog attracts more than 800 respondents.
LEADA, which boasts more than 500 members, has been successful in helping secure funding for government projects around the town, including the Hotel Road Lookout, which is near completion.
BIDI, however, claims LEADA presents plans with no wriggle room.
“They put forward their ideas and that’s it, there’s no alternative view presented,” BIDI’s Peter Jones said.
“We’re not here to compete with LEADA, we just believe that a lot of projects need more than one option, but that’s all we’re presented with. No discussion/debate just a take it or leave it scenario.
“Our plan covers more than just new infrastructure, it goes beyond into long-term employment and long-term economic growth. We want to capitalise on our indigenous history and create new opportunities that will see the town prosper, not just in peak tourism periods, but year-round.
“The proposed plan outlined is an attempt to establish an alternative proactive strategy, with all-year visitor attractions, to benefit the town and region.”
BIDI’s vision is: A significant development strategy for Lakes Entrance, its prime locations and heritage, creating a range of experiences and visitor attractions that will secure long-term employment, entrepreneurial opportunities for environmental and adventure tourism, ensuring survival of the township.
The plan details tourist expenditure from day trips to overnight stays, based on published East Gippsland Shire and Destination Gippsland data.
BIDI says its projections for the future, after a disastrous sequence of events including drought, bushfires and now COVID-19, should be the basis for council’s Economic Recovery Plan.
The document has been sent to local Federal and State MPs Darren Chester and Tim Bull, East Gippsland Shire Councillors and prospective councillors nominating for next month’s council election.
The plan can be obtained by request to BIDI (details available at the Lakes Post office) or viewed on John Munns’ “Out and About” internet blog.
The Hotel Road Lookout at Kalimna is almost complete, providing a 270- degree view of the Gippsland Lakes. However, Bullock Island Development Incorporated believes more options should be made available for the public to choose from when it comes to key town infrastructure projects.