One of Victoria’s most popular car and passenger ferry services (and one of Queenscliff’s biggest tourist operators) has been included as part of the Victorian Government‘s $2.7 billion Building Works package to stimulate the economy.
Searoad Ferries, which connects the Great Ocean Road and the Bellarine to the Mornington Peninsula, will receive a total of $5 million to go towards the redevelopment of its ferry terminals in Queenscliff and Sorrento to accommodate the almost one million people and the 26,000 vehicles that travel on the ferries each year.
This money will complement the $10 million investment already committed by the federal government as part of the Geelong City Deal, $20 million by Searoad Ferries and $1 million by the Mornington Peninsula Shire, making it a $36 million project.
The project, which has been in the planning stages for the past few years, was brought to head last year the Victoria Tourism Industry Council (VTIC) initially called on the state government to invest the $5 million towards the redevelopment of the two terminals which currently suffer from inadequate facilities, aging shelter facilities and traffic congestion.
This development is expected to transform the passenger ferry service into a high-quality tourism product across the iconic Port Phillip Bay, as well as boost local employment and local economy.
“We have been working closely with Searoad Ferries CEO Matt McDonald and advocating to the state government for financial support to be able to commence stage one of this initiative,” says Mornington Peninsula Shire Mayor, Cr Sam Hearn.
“The timing of this announcement is really pleasing as it will be a major boost to our economic recovery efforts as we transition out of the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Preliminary works are scheduled for 2021.