Council seeks to commit $2 million for future Phillip Island land purchases

Bass Coast Shire Council has released the draft 2018/19 Budget for community feedback and proposes an allocation of $2 million towards strategic land purchases on Phillip Island for future community needs.

One property that can be publically identified now as being of interest is the 16.29 hectare parcel of land on the corner of Phillip Island and Ventnor Road, Cowes, otherwise commonly known as the ‘carnival site.’

Council has begun preliminary discussions with the land owner and commenced negotiation to purchase the land by mutual agreement. This site has been identified for future community use including, but not limited to, recreation activities on Phillip Island.

There has been a lot of interest from the community for the establishment of an aquatics facility on Phillip Island. At this stage, it is too premature for Council to consider such a facility at this site. The location for a future aquatics centre will require further investigation and appropriate engagement with the community and key stakeholders.

That being said, Council acknowledges the Phillip Island community’s interest in such a facility, which was also strongly featured in the community engagement to develop the Council Plan 2017-21.

A masterplan currently exists for the 16.3 hectare Hilton Chadwick Reserve, which abuts the carnival site. If Council acquires the land, a review of the existing masterplan would be required to reflect the Hilton Chadwick Reserve and the carnival site as one site.

As negotiations have only just commenced, there is little information that can be provided with regards to the site under discussion. The $2 million is an allocation for land purchases on Phillip Island, not just this parcel of land. Other sites that are being considered, but cannot be publically disclosed, would be for the purposes of future-proofing other services delivered on Phillip Island.

Bass Coast Shire Council Mayor, Cr Pamela Rothfield explains that this proposed investment on Phillip Island represents Council’s significant commitment to improve services for the Phillip Island community and that proposed land purchases will ensure future community needs can be met.

“Two million dollars is a lot of money in anyone’s language and I hope our residents and visitors will be pleased to see that Council is investing significant funding towards future community facilities and services that are required on Phillip Island,” Cr Rothfield said.

“Potential land purchases are the start of the process. Once this initial process is completed and we can confirm a way forward, we will engage with our community and key stakeholders on the next steps.

“I wish I could provide more information, but for now, I hope the community can appreciate the direction we are proposing to take and we welcome any feedback they have on this item or any other proposed expenditure through the draft Budget consultation.”

For further information, the draft Budget can be viewed at www.basscoast.vic.gov.au/budget or at Council’s Customer Service Centres in Wonthaggi, Cowes, Inverloch and Grantville.

The draft Budget consultation period closes on Tuesday, 22 May 2018 and submissions may be heard from 4.30pm on Wednesday, 30 May 2018 at a Special Meeting of Council in Wonthaggi’s Council Chambers. The final 2018/19 Budget will be presented at the Ordinary Council Meeting on Wednesday, 20 June for adoption, along with the outcome of any submissions.