The Snowy Mountains is positioned to become the Southern Hemisphere's very own version of Aspen, with investigations into an airport as part of the region's Special Activation Precinct (SAP) now underway.
Minister for Regional NSW and Member for Monaro John Barilaro said now is the time for big thinking when it comes to planning for the future of Jindabyne and the Snowy Mountains region.
"We know the Snowy Mountains is a special place, and our community in Jindabyne and the surrounding Snowy region has been deeply hurt by the recent bushfires and COVID-19 restrictions, so now more than ever we will be bold in finding ways to make the region stronger," Mr Barilaro said.
"The Snowy Mountains Special Activation Precinct is an opportunity to boost the Snowy region to become the Queenstown of Australia, or the Aspen of the Southern Hemisphere, so we are looking at all options big and small, for the short and the long term.
"We know the key barriers to growth are capacity constraints for local tourism operators, and connectivity into the region. We are thinking big about how to plan for this over the long term."
The Snowy Mountains Special Activation Precinct will take into consideration existing work from the Go Jindabyne master plan process and build on that to help inform a master plan for a bigger Snowy Mountains precinct.
Mr Barilaro said while the Special Activation Precinct has a broader vision, it will still focus on the needs of the town of Jindabyne and will include the important town planning aspects of the original Go Jindabyne plan. These key aspects include the education precinct, affordable housing options, health care and aged care, as well as a library, heritage centre, and improved community amenities.
The NSW Government continues to work with Snowy Monaro Regional Council, businesses and a Community Advisory Group to progress the master plan process for a Snowy Mountains Special Activation Precinct.
Whilst traditional community engagement methods have been put on-hold due to COVID-19, government representatives expect to be able to start community consultation sessions in person over the coming months.
The Special Activation Precinct program is driven by the $4.2 billion Snowy Hydro Legacy Fund. Visit www.nsw.gov.au/snowySAP for more information.