Yarrawonga has been chosen as a future key regional centre for Northern Victoria in a growth management strategy developed by the Victorian Planning Authority.
Yarrawonga was chosen for the strategy due to its relatively high growth rate and developing role as a regional centre for homes, jobs and services.
At the November Moira Shire Council meeting, State Government funding was approved to be sought from the Victorian Planning Authority to undertake the next step of developing a framework plan.
The approved growth management strategy stated that growth in population, investment and employment will create challenges that need to be managed effectively to ensure that Yarrawonga remains a great place to live, work and visit.
Yarrawonga Moira Shire Councillors Peter Mansfield and Wendy Buck both agreed the management strategy is a positive for the town with Cr Mansfield saying; “this is a great map of where our town is heading,” with Cr Buck adding; “It’s really thrilling to have been selected and this could mean great things for Yarrawonga to come.”
To obtain the information the strategy was delivered in three stages with stage one being a preparation of a background analysis report including detailed economic and labour force analysis, regional benchmarking and interpretation of local and regional economic issues.
The second stage saw the preparation of forecasts and the growth model, summarised in the forecasts report, including forecasts of population, dwelling requirement, future floorspace demand, employment demand and employment volume by industry type.
The third stage required preparation of an Executive Report summarising key findings and outputs from stages 1 and 2.
Some key findings from the management strategy were:
• Using a medium growth scenario, Yarrawonga’s population is expected to grow by 861 within 5 years; 3346 in 20 years; and 6150 by 2051.
• Under the same scenario, jobs are expected to grow by 245 within 5 years; 954 in 20 years; and 1766 by 2051.
• Again under this scenario, new dwelling demand is expected to be 374 within 5 years; 1454 in 20 years; and 2674 by 2051.
• Commercial and retail floor space is expected to increase significantly over the period.
• There is adequate residentially zoned land to meet this growth.
• Jobs growth will drive retail and commercial floor space demand, but there is sufficient existing land available to meet these needs.
• There is sufficiently zoned industrial land, but to meet future needs more of it will have
to be released to the market.
It is also predicted that an ageing population is expected to see job growth in services, health, retail and construction at the expense of declining traditional industrial sectors.
Suggested actions contained in the strategy included regular market assessment to monitor growth activity, development of framework plans and undertaking stakeholder engagement with key landholders to identify willingness to advance land to market.
These suggestions form the basis of recommended action in response to the receiving of the Yarrawonga Growth Management strategy.