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The Victorian Government's Department of Innomvation, Industry and Regional Development has released a new funding program for regional Victoria, which proposes funding for rail trails.

Page 48 of the Moving Forward document (Download full document (1.3MB PDF)) includes the following:-

A new statewide Provincial Pathways program
Many provincial councils report the positive economic social and recreational benefits of investment in pathways such as bicycle paths, rail trails, footpaths and walking tracks. The Government acknowledges the strong community support for investment in connecting pathways within and between towns and will provide $8 million over four years to create a new statewide Provincial Pathways program. Funded through the RIDF and the Provincial Victoria Growth Fund the program will include
  • progressively developing the Great Victorian Coastal Walk, with new projects along Victoria’s coastline from Mallacoota to Portland
  • working with Bicycle Victoria and local councils to prioritize rail trail projects and promote the benefits of cycle touring in provincial Victoria; and
  • establishing a Pathways Working Group to identify and leverage investment for new tourism projects along the Great Victorian Coastal Walk and rail trail routes.

According to a Warrnambool Standard article the proposed Port Fairy to Warrnambool rail trail is looking like receiving $1.74 million.

Click here for more details of the proposed rail trail.

And according to a Wimmera Mail-Times article the proposed Horsham to Natimuk rail trail may also become a reality with the help of this funding.

Railtrails Australia congratulates Bicycle Victoria on all their work to help achieve this funding committment.