THE Federal Government has confirmed the allocation of $100,000 for a study of the feasibility of upgrading the Plenty Valley Link Rd as a tourist route between the Derwent and Huon Valleys. The Federal Member for Lyons, Eric Hutchinson MHR, said he was delighted that work will soon be under way.
Assistant Infrastructure and Regional Development Minister Jamie Briggs last week said $100,000 would go to the Derwent Valley Council for a study into the benefits of the Plenty Valley Link Road upgrade. Mr Briggs said that the study would be funded from the Tasmanian Jobs and Growth Plan announced during last year’s federal election campaign.
Mr Hutchinson said that this was fantastic news for the communities of the Derwent and Huon Valleys who regard the road as an important piece of infrastructure in their bid to attract more tourists to the region. "The Plenty Road links the two valleys with their many historical and natural attractions and would make an excellent tourist route if it was in better repair," Mr Hutchinson said.
"This project has bilateral support because it will benefit both valley communities. The potential for tourism is enormous. Tourist drawcards within the two valleys include the popular Mt Field National Park, the historic Willow Court precinct, at New Norfolk, the Salmon Ponds at Plenty and the Derwent Valley Railway as well as business enterprises like the Redlands Estate, the Two Metre Tall Brewery and Reid Fruits.
Mr Hutchinson said having the facts on the table about the logistical, social, tourism and employment benefits of upgrading the Plenty road would help all levels of government make an informed decision on whether to go ahead with the project. "Sustainable development and a more competitive state economy rely on appropriately informed and targeted infrastructure investment," Mr Hutchinson said.
The Plenty Valley Link Rd feasibility study is expected to be completed later this year.