October 20, 2015

ONE STEP CLOSER FOR BALLARAT’S NEW CANADIAN REGIONAL PARK

The Andrews Labor Government has moved one step closer to honouring its election commitment to deliver a new park for Ballarat, with the introduction of the Crown Land Legislation Amendment (Canadian Regional Park and Other Matters) Bill 2015 into Parliament today.

The Government has worked closely with the Ballarat community in the creation of a park that will be enjoyed for years to come.

The new park will consist of around 640 hectares and will encompass the existing Canadian State Forest and former Victorian Plantation Corporation (VPC) plantation land in the Mt Clear area.

A regional park will accommodate the community’s wishes to access the park for a wide variety of uses, such as bushwalking, bike riding, nature observation, dog walking, horse riding and prospecting.

The new park will contribute to a green corridor within the Ballarat landscape, that supports outdoor recreation for local residents, user groups and the broader community, and protects a north-south wildlife corridor.

Once the park is created we’ll work with traditional owners and the community to find a name to which acknowledges its location in Wadawurrung country.

The Bill will also create the Hepburn Regional Park and the Kerang State Game Reserve, fulfilling past commitments to local communities and the Government will work with closely with traditional owners during development.

 Quotes attributable to the Minister for Environment, Climate Change and Water, Lisa Neville

 “The introduction of our legislative amendment this week brings us one step closer to fulfilling an important election commitment to create a Canadian Regional Park for the people of Ballarat and the broader community.”

  “The Canadian Regional Park will provide a variety of recreational opportunities as well as contribute to a north-south wildlife corridor and protect the area’s natural and cultural values.”

 Quotes attributable to the Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Natalie Hutchins

“We’ll work with Traditional Owners to ensure that the new park, located on Wadawurrung country, reflects the heritage and environmental value of the site – including its name.”

 Quotes attributable to Labor Member for Buninyong, Geoff Howard

 “The Andrews Labor Government has undertaken extensive consultation to ensure we are creating a park that reflects the wishes of the local community.”

 “This is exciting news for so many individuals and groups across Ballarat who have expressed their interest in making greater use of the Canadian Forest area – ensuring that this land will be protected for future generations.”