Liveability key item for councillors

DISCUSSION: Mayor Barry Lyons at the meeting. Picture: JIM ALDERSEY

DISCUSSION: Mayor Barry Lyons at the meeting. Picture: JIM ALDERSEY

COUNCIL is set to adopt a bold new vision that will enable Greater Bendigo to measure its liveability status against other regional centres in Australia.

The updated council plan has been framed around the vision: Greater Bendigo – working together to be Australia’s most liveable regional city.

Mayor Barry Lyons said the vision was ambitious but achieveable.

“Council firmly believes that we can make life better for our residents by centering our decision-making on becoming the most liveable regional city,” Cr Lyons said.

The city has developed a number of key indicators that can be measured over time, including the availablity of cycling and walking trails, child immunisations rates, education standards, and the recorded offences of crimes.

Councillors were also last night set to approve a plan to provide access to city-owned infrastructure to enable the rapid roll-out of free Wi-Fi in central Bendigo.

The request by the state government was considered at Wednesday’s meeting and could boost central Bendigo’s overall appeal by providing enhanced educational, entrepreneurial and tourism opportunities for students, visitors and businesses.

A report to council welcomed the state government initiative and encouraged council to agree to the request for access to city-owned infrastructure.

Praising the state government initiative, Cr Lyons said the council was pleased to be able to assist with the roll out.

“Free Wi-Fi will boost central Bendigo’s overall appeal by providing enhanced educational, entrepreneurial and tourism opportunities for students, visitors and businesses,” Cr Lyons said.

The proposed service will be designed for outdoor spaces only and will not replace indoor services currently supplied to residential and commercial premises by Internet Service Providers or existing free indoor Wi-Fi hotspot services. A preferred Wi-Fi provider is expected to be announced within weeks.

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