$12m boost for cycle tourism in North East

05 May 2017 Wangaratta Chronicle, Wangaratta VIC (General News) by Leah Tindill Ltindill@ Ne Com Au MAJOR extensions and enhancements are set to begin on the Murray to Mountains Rail Trail after $12 million in State Government funding was yesterday confirmed for the project. Labor politician Jaclyn Symes (MLC, Northern Victoria) made the announcement in Beechworth yesterday after a significant amount of funding was confirmed in Tuesdays state budget release. The project was identified as one of seven around Victoria that would significantly improve tourism. Tourism North East chief executive officer Amber Gardner said she was delighted by the $12 million funding confirmation. She said the project would include expansion of the trail between Beechworth and Yackandandah, while art installations and a cycling hub would be among the enhancements to the trail. The High Country has long been recognised as having the strongest cycle tourism credentials in the state, she said. This funding acknowledges the regions competitive strengths in this space and will assist the High Country in achieving its vision of becoming the premier cycle tourism destination in Victoria. Within the regional cycle tourism offering, the Murray to Mountains is considered a signature cycle tourism product. This significant funding opportunity will further enhance this iconic visitor drawcard through extensions to the core trail, artistic and interpretive enhancements along the trail, the stimulation of new private sector opportunities and marketing to drive visitation associated with this cycle tourism experience. It is anticipated the project will bring more than 260,000 visitors to the region, opening up new business opportunities and creating jobs within local communities. This is a massive win for tourism, business growth and employment opportunities for communities in the North East, Ms Symes said. After a devastating week for workers in Kiewa, it is great to have some good news and $12 million of investment in the North East that will create new business opportunities and jobs. Licensed by Copyright Agency. You may only copy or communicate this work with a licence.