Car Ferry Business Case due for release

Bass Coast Shire Council, Mornington Peninsula Shire Council and the Victorian Government are preparing a Business Case to determine the cost, requirements and viability of a vehicle and passenger service between Stony Point, French Island and Cowes.

The draft Business Case recommends that the preferred site for the Cowes terminal and pier be developed near the current site of the Cowes Yacht Club, with 10-14 sailings per day.

Bass Coast Mayor, Cr Pamela Rothfield reinforced that the Cowes West beach site is not the preferred location.

“From recent discussions with the Phillip Island community, I think Phillip Island residents will be pleased to see that the area near the Yacht Club is the preferred location for a terminal,” Cr Rothfield said.

“It will be great for the community to have a look through the Business Case once it has been released, as it shows how each possible site was evaluated.

“The project aims to create an iconic route that would connect Mornington Peninsula and Phillip Island with the Great Ocean Road, bringing together three of Victoria’s most significant tourism regions.”

The 333km touring route would provide a unique experience for tourists in a single circuit and without the need to pass through a major city.

This project will:

· Support the development of a touring route which will increase overnight stays and tourism spend in the Western Port side of the Mornington Peninsula and on Phillip Island

· Develop a broader Victorian touring route that will enable tourists to travel from the Great Ocean Road to Phillip Island and onto the Gippsland region, without the need to pass through Melbourne

· Provide an alternative route for Phillip Island residents to reach the mainland for employment, services and recreational opportunities.

Bass Coast Shire Council, Mornington Peninsula Shire Council and the Victorian Government are reviewing the first draft of the Business Case, which will be released in February 2018 for  more extensive public consultation.