Forest Park upgrade

Forest Park upgrade

Federal Member for Gippsland, Darren Chester, has secured $1.3 million for a much-needed upgrade of Forest Park.

Mr Chester said the Forest Park upgrade would revitalise and modernise Orbost’s recreation area, visitor rest-stop and gateway to the East Gippsland Rail Trail.

“Improving the adjoining park network along the banks of the Snowy River will deliver social and economic benefits to Orbost,” Mr Chester said.

“This will encourage more people to stop and take a break in the region and provide a destination for those travelling along the Princes Highway.

“Works will include a new toilet and amenities block, increased parking, a playground and installation of a picnic area which will complement the upgrade of the iconic Snowy River trestle bridge that connects Forest Park to the East Gippsland Rail Trail.”

Mr Chester said the investment would build on other projects underway in the area and in turn will create local jobs during construction and longer term.

“We need to continue to invest in infrastructure that will encourage visitors to stay longer in our region and support our local businesses,” Mr Chester said.

“The Federal Government is working in partnership with East Gippsland Shire Council to deliver local priority projects.

redevelopment will boost the visitor economy in Orbost and ensure we have good facilities to market our region’s attractions.

“I’m keen to secure more investment to encourage healthy, active lifestyles for locals and more reasons for visitors to take a break in the region.”

Orbost Chamber of Commerce secretary, Garry Squires, said he’s excited to see the outcome of the funding.

“Forest park is an important destination for locals and for the passing tourists,” he said.

“The announcement of the $1.3 million grant from the Federal Government, along with the allocation already available from the Shire budget, will allow for the upgrade of the whole Forest Park precinct at the one time. 

“Key parts of that upgrade will include the long overdue replacement of the toilet block, an upgrade of the children’s playground, increased parking, major improvements to the day use facilities and restoration of the old water wheel and the area around it.

“The outcome will be an even better focal point at the entry to the town.”

This announcement is part of a $7 million funding package through the Federal Government’s Regional Recovery Partnership (RRP) that supports five East Gippsland community-based projects that will boost the regional economy.

Federal Member for Gippsland, Darren Chester, has secured $1.3 million for an upgrade of Forest Park in Orbost. Mr Chester (right) is pictured with secretary of the Orbost Chamber of Commerce, Garry Squires, East Gippsland Shire Council Deputy Mayor, Cr Mark Reeves, and Member for Gippsland East Tim Bull. (PS)