Audi Victoria Week - Yarra Street Pier rebuilding in the City of Greater Geelong would allow the Audi Victoria Week regatta to extend its international profile said Mayor Cr John Mitchell.
'The Audi Victoria Week regatta is an enormously popular and successful event with a long and celebrated history but it could be even bigger if our plans to rebuild the Yarra Street Pier are realised,' said Cr Mitchell.
The Yarra Street Pier project would replace the original pier that was destroyed by fire in 1988 with a new structure, part fixed, part floating, that could accommodate cruise ships and provide moorings for smaller recreational and charter boats.
A total of 78 new small craft berths would be made available through the construction of floating pontoons.
'One of the most important upgrades for Audi Victoria Week would be the ability to provide berths for Maxi yachts in sheltered water, which would add considerably to the event’s international appeal,' said Mayor Mitchell.
The Mayor added that the Yarra Street Pier would also provide a suitable berth for passenger cruise ships in Geelong.
'Each visiting cruise ship brings an estimated $1 million economic benefit to Victoria and visits are on the rise with passenger numbers expected to increase from 83,000 in 2010 to more than 216,000 by 2020,' said Cr Mitchell.
'Cruise ship companies have expressed interest in coming to Geelong and in fact we are due to host the Silver Shadow and Silver Spirit this year but our capacity to host ships is limited through the lack of suitable public infrastructure.
The City of Greater Geelong has committed $5 million towards the Yarra Street Pier project and the Royal Geelong Yacht Club has promised $2.5 million – we are now seeking a funding commitment from the State Government of $15 million – so that this long awaited infrastructure project can get underway,' said the Mayor.
'We are calling on the State Government to support Geelong’s Yarra Street Pier project in recognition of the significant economic benefit it will deliver to Victoria,' said the Mayor. http://www.victoriaweek.com/