20 year vision for Island tourism out for comment
After many months of consultation with community and stakeholders, Bass Coast Shire Council this week voted to release the draft Phillip Island and San Remo Tourism Strategy 2035 for public comment.
Development of the draft Strategy has involved an extensive amount of research and engagement, with over 300 community members, industry and stakeholder groups consultated.
Churchill Ward Councillor, Phil Wright, said developing a strategy for the region was important in recognising the future challenges that lie ahead and the importance of tourism to the Phillip Island and San Remo communities.
“The tourism outlook for Phillip Island and San Remo over the next 20 years looks very promising, however the region will face significant challenges as population and visitor trends continue to grow,” Cr Wright said.
“This includes seasonal visitor fluctuations, labour and skills shortages, traffic congestion and transport linkages, global economic uncertainty, increasing environmental pressures and increasing competition from other destinations.
The five aspirations that have been identified for the region in the draft Strategy are:
- Be established as a highly desirable destination attracting visitors that are willing to spend more per day on high-quality accommodation and quality experiences and encourage repeat visitation
- Generate year-round visitation including mid-week visitation, from a range of both domestic and international markets
- Build connectivity between accommodation and attractions so visitors can leave the car in the car park and enjoy the region on foot or on bicycle (or even Segway)
- Manage growth of day visitors and low-value experiences to ensure sustainable long-term growth
- Be recognised globally for our efforts in conservation and improvement in the quality of the landscape, ecosystems and community well-being through benchmarking to the Global Sustainable Tourism Criteria (GSTC)
Bass Coast Mayor, Cr Jordan Crugnale, said the draft Strategy will also provide a long-term strategic framework to guide tourism development, improve visitor opportunities and facilities and strengthen the local economy through sustainable tourism and investment.
“The future of Phillip Island and San Remo as sustainable tourism destination will depend on a significant investment in tourism marketing and infrastructure, both to reposition the destination with new markets domestically and internationally.”
The draft Strategy can be downloaded from Council’s website from 26 April, or provided in hard copy from Council’s Customer Service Centres. Community members can provide feedback by attending open house drop-in sessions to be held in May, or by providing comments directly to Council through its website, social media channels, email or in writing, or via the Phillip Island Tourism Strategy 2035 Facebook page. For more information and details on the drop-in sessions, please visit www.basscoast.vic.gov.au/phillipisland2035.