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A proposed all-abilities walking circuit in Lakes Entrance has received a further boost with the community expressing overwhelming support and the Federal Government confirming it would honour a $3.6 million funding offer.

Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester said he was pleased with the independent ‘engagement report’ prepared by East Gippsland Shire and the decision by the government to provide funding for the next stage of works on Krauatungalung Walk.

“The formal consultation process, including a survey and community information session conducted by the Shire has found 89% of survey respondents support the draft concept design,” Mr Chester said.

“According to the Shire report tabled this week, ‘there was significant positive support for the project and proposed pathway route that will provide a great asset for all the community that is usable year round’.

“Any issues raised in feedback provided by the community will help Council to finalise the design of the boardwalk and pathway which is intended to provide an outstanding exercise opportunity for all ages, with public artwork recognising the Indigenous heritage of the region.

“The first art installations by GLAWAC have been extremely popular and I’m look forward to future designs.”

Mr Chester said the Shire had finalised tenders for work to start in May next year, from the original $2.2 million he has secured from the Federal Government.

“There’s now an extra $3.6 million being provided for future stages, after the Minister told me this week the new government would support the additional funding commitment from the Coalition,” Mr Chester said.

“I’m working closely with the Shire to ensure the money goes as far as possible to complete the entire project but we haven’t seen the final designs or costings at this stage for the boardwalk.

“At the end of the day, we want to deliver an all-abilities accessible circuit around the shores of Cunninghame Arm with an environmentally-friendly design which pays respects to the region’s heritage.

“It’s an exciting project which will add to the transformation of the esplanade and other public areas of Lakes Entrance that I have worked with local community leaders to secure the necessary funding from Federal and State Governments.”

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