Cr Grace La Vella – Maryborough Advertiser

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Maryborough was extremely fortunate to be presented by the specialist team on the World Heritage Bid (WHB) recently. One of the experts, Barry Gamble, has been involved in 21 discoveries globally, worked with 15 governments across the world and successfully put together many bids world-wide, including Japan and California. They stated our “key statement of universal value” is unique to anywhere else in the world. It was a magnificent presentation about everything we need to know on the bid, where it sits currently and the next steps.

Harnessing World Heritage will increase tourism, unlocking new opportunities that will drive regional regeneration and growth. It will mean new investment and new jobs. It will also celebrate a plethora of opportunity sustaining us into the future.

The tourism benefits will unlock 2.2 million new visitors to the region, increase visitor spending an average of $44 million per year – hence increasing jobs, and bolster accommodation benefits.

When asked about the viability of our impending Castlemaine Maryborough Rail Trail there was resounding support from the experts, who expanded by saying rail trails are now a worldwide phenomenon beyond our region, and fundamental within the UNESCO/ WHB scope.

As infrastructure connecting sites and people apart from roads and trains, travel on features such as rail trails is an indispensable requirement. They offer exceptional experiences, benefit pedestrians, mobility devices and most recreational modes such as bicycles and scooters. Rail trails connect visitors while offering them joy, adventure, and allowing them to engage in the panorama of our terrain – essentially our cultural identity, and all this in a leisurely manner.

Cr Grace La Vella

Maryborough Ward

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