Commercial boating opportunities on the Yarra

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Parks Victoria seeks Expressions of Interest for boating activities on the Yarra.

Parks Victoria is set to launch two Expressions of Interest (EOI) in the coming months for berths along the Lower Yarra River.

The commercial opportunities on offer include a 10-year licence for commercial vessel operators to have exclusive access to designated berths at Federation Wharf, Southgate Wharf, Banana Alley Wharf and South Wharf.

“The Yarra River and its surrounds have changed significantly over the past decades, as has the way in which locals and tourists engage with the river and the businesses that operate in its vicinity,” said Simon Talbot, Parks Victoria COO.

“With the growing appreciation of the river, has come increased popularity of venues on its banks and the use of the river itself for commercial operations, cultural and sporting events, tourism and a wide range of recreational activities.

“Parks Victoria is seeking proposals that will bring high quality experiences to the Yarra River, complementing existing river users whilst creating opportunities for new and innovative activities to enhance the broader visitor experience.”

The two EOIs, which will run concurrently for 12 weeks, are:

  • EOI (1) - A single-stage EOI opportunity for commercial vessel operators/river touring experiences to obtain a 10-year licence for exclusive access to designated berths at Federation Wharf, Southgate Wharf, Banana Alley Wharf and South Wharf
  • EOI (2) - A two-stage EOI opportunity for stationary floating commercial and/or recreational concepts, to obtain a licence for up to three years at various locations along the Yarra River

According to Parks Victoria, EOI (1) is offering a longer 10-year exclusive licence in order to facilitate investment in quality visitor experiences which reflect the needs of a diverse Melbourne demographic.

EOI (2) will seek activities including on-water food and beverage offerings, floating recreational activities, temporary accommodation pop ups, performance spaces, interpretive services and more. The decision comes after two on-water food and beverage offers (Supafish and Arbory Afloat) were trialled by Parks Victoria over the summer of 2017/2018.

Parks Victoria has offered the previous trial participants the opportunity to extend the trial and Arbory Afloat has taken up the offer.

The two EOIs will be launched before the end of 2018. More information available here.

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