New funding for Blue Mountains tourisim to boost the local economy
Katoomba’s laneways will be transformed with a series of art installations, while Scenic World will be supported to host its popular Dinosaur Valley experience as part of a new round of funding from the Morrison government under the Regional Tourism Bushfire Recovery Grants program.
In partnership with the Blue Mountains Tool Library and local artists, Blue Mountains City Council will receive $145,000 to establish new artworks across Katoomba, from street art murals, sculptures through to light and sound installations.
Destination Sydney Surrounds North, which helps deliver tourism initiatives with the NSW Government, will receive $36,000 to assist Scenic World with the running of the Dinosaur Valley exhibitions.
Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, David Littleproud said that these vital grants would have positive impacts for bushfire-affected communities.
“We committed to stick with bushfire affected communities for their long recovery journey and these grants are one very important support mechanism to get tourists back to affected areas – boosting local economies,” Minister Littleproud said.
Liberal Senator for Western Sydney, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, said it was important the Blue Mountains maintained its reputation as a tourism destination.
“Scenic World and Katoomba are magnets for tourism, with positive flow on effects up and down the highway,” Senator Payne said.
“This latest round of funding follows on from July, when we announced government support for the Wollemi Artisan Markets, a new live music program and the upgrade of the Blue Mountains Civic Centre.
“These strategic investments from the Morrison Government will support the Blue Mountains economy and local jobs as we recover from drought, bushfires, flooding, and the COVID-19 crisis.”
Mayor of Blue Mountains City Council, Cr Mark Greenhill OAM, welcomed the funding.
“Supporting our local artists, particularly in these challenging times, is something Council is dedicated to,” Mayor Mark Greenhill said.
“This exciting project, to be completed in partnership with TOOLO, will complement the Katoomba arts and cultural scene and enhance the Blue Mountains as the City of the Arts.”
Anthea Hammond, Managing Director of Scenic World, said the Blue Mountains economy was resilient.
The funding is a welcome boost to support the delivery of our major events, which will have a positive impact on the Blue Mountains community by supporting local jobs and the tourism economy,” Ms Hammond said.
“It has been a tumultuous year for our region – from fires to floods and a global pandemic – but our resilience is one of our greatest strengths and we are thrilled to welcome visitors back to our region.”
President of the Blue Mountains Regional Business Chamber, Mark Barton, said the government’s support for the tourism sector would boost business confidence.
“Businesses have been telling me about the need for more investment in the tourism sector,” Mr Barton said.
“In these difficult times, every cent counts, so it’s great to see this funding being strategically allocated.”
In addition to the latest round of regional tourism funding, as of 2 September 2020, 1,282 businesses in the Blue Mountains have received the Morrison Government’s $10,000 Small Business Grants.
“Over $12 million in financial assistance has been provided directly to local businesses as part of the bushfire recovery process,” Senator Payne said.
The grants program was developed in consultation with the National Bushfire Recovery Agency and is being administered by Austrade. For further information on the RTBR grants program visit: https://www.austrade.gov.au/Australian/Tourism/Tourism-and-business/Grants/regional-tourism-bushfire-recovery-grants