Media Releases 2016

Posted on 12/09/2016 by Phillip Island Nature Parks

Phillip Island Nature Parks Board update – August 2016

The Phillip Island Nature Parks Board met on Wednesday, 31 August to review a range of significant planning items, receive updates on major developments, approve the Annual Report and to acknowledge the continued success of the Penguins Plus experience.

Cape Woolamai Coastal Reserves Master Plan
The Board was delighted to approve the Cape Woolamai Coastal Reserves Master Plan, which has been endorsed by the Bass Coast Shire Council, and wished to thank the community for its valuable input during the extensive consultation process. The Board noted that a Community Open session will be scheduled in the near future to provide a summary overview of the outcomes of the Master Plan. The Board noted that in line with the approved plan, works proposed at Anzacs Beach would commence within this financial year.

Draft Summerland Peninsula Trails Master Plan
The Draft Summerland Peninsula Trails Master Plan was endorsed by the Board for community consultation. It has now been sent to Bass Coast Shire Council for its input. Comprehensive community consultation will commence later this year to ensure that the future needs and concerns of the local community and recreational users are considered.

“The draft Summerland Peninsula Trails Master Plan provides the Nature Parks with an exciting opportunity to showcase the exceptional conservation outcomes achieved in this area and deliver a truly outstanding nature-based experience to our visitors,” said Jeff Floyd, Chair. “The proposed network of tracks and trails within the Peninsula is an integral component in the sustainable and ongoing creation of a world leading Nature Park, which is the fundamental vision identified in the 2012 Summerland Peninsula Master Plan.”

Woolamai Beach Surf Life Saving Club
The Board has approved the leasing of an area of Smiths Beach to Woolamai Beach Surf Life Saving Club for the construction of a dedicated lifesaving facility. Following extensive consultation with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) which has provided support and approval for this project to proceed, final negotiations are currently underway on the lease agreement. The Woolamai Beach Surf Life Saving Club will provide community updates on the development of this facility as it progresses.

Food and Beverage Services
The Nature Parks’ is committed to deliver a world-class experience to our visitors. Recognising the high current level of visitation and the very significant forecast growth in visitor numbers, Nature Parks management has carefully considered the best approach to deliver food and beverage services in the future. As a result, the Board has approved a tender process for the provision of food and beverage services at all Nature Parks venues.

“The Nature Parks’ core expertise and business focus is in environmental management and tourism, and we require a partner with specialised expertise in food and beverage to deliver a quality service and manage this growth and increased demand,” said CEO Matthew Jackson. “It is of paramount importance to us that our existing food and beverage staff are offered ongoing employment and this will form part of the tender. A specialised partner will also be in a position, through their operational networks, to provide existing staff with access to greater opportunities and potentially improved career pathways within the hospitality industry.” said Mr Jackson.

Annual Report
The Board approved the Annual Report 2015-16 and is delighted with the performance of the organisation over the past 12 months. “This was a year of significant new developments, strong partnerships, ongoing environmental excellence and major growth in our tourism business,” said Jeff Floyd, Chair. “The opening of the new Penguins Plus viewing experience and the Antarctic Journey attraction are notable achievements. They deliver increased capacity for nature-based experiences and provide ongoing economic contribution to Phillip Island and the Bass Coast region by raising the island’s profile, increasing repeat visitation and encouraging visitors to stay longer.”

“The Nature Parks continued to develop strong partnerships including with the Chengdu Giant Panda Research Centre which will contribute to the sharing of world-leading research, conservation and eco-tourism expertise,” said CEO Matthew Jackson. “We also partnered with Bass Coast Shire Council, Regional Development Victoria and Destination Phillip Island to develop the 20 year Phillip Island and San Remo Visitor Economy Strategy, ensuring the long term viability of the important Visitor Economy sector.”

The Annual Report will be tabled in Parliament in October 2016, after which a summary will be released to the community. The full Annual Report will be available on the Nature Parks website.

Penguin Parade Visitor Centre Development
The Board noted that the new Penguin Parade Visitor Centre Development project is progressing well, and that the Project Manager and Quantity Surveyor have recently been appointed. The Board is continuing its consideration of a shortlisted selection for the appointment of a Principal Architect for this important development.

Award-winning Penguins Plus
The Board was delighted that the Penguins Plus viewing experience continues to impress and has been awarded yet another accolade. Lloyd Group recently won the 2016 Master Builder Awards category of Excellence in Civil Construction. Since its opening in November 2015, the Penguins Plus viewing experience has won the category of Infrastructure Innovation in the United Nations World Environment Day Awards, as well as the Award of Excellence in the Tourism category at the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) Victorian Landscape Architecture Awards.

Jeff Floyd
Chair
Phillip Island Nature Parks
#ENDS#

Media Enquiries:
Roland Pick - Communications Executive
Tel: +613 5951 2825 Mobile: 0418 402 161
Email: rpick@penguins.org.au