River precinct facelift
WANGARATTA’S Ovens River Precinct has received the thumbs up from visitors and local businesses as the $3.3 million project opened to the public during spring.
Ten months after work began in December 2012, fences were taken down in late September prior to the official opening.
The precinct has been compared to water features in towns like Benalla, Shepparton and Bendigo, where paths and special areas can be utilised near rivers and lakes.
Soon to be residents in Wangaratta, Rob and Joy Barr agreed the money towards the project had been well spent.
“It’s been great, there’s been a number of people walking up and down,” Mrs Barr said.
“There could even be the possibility for another restaurant to happen along here too,” she said.
Jake Bowtell and Tahleah Styles, along with Asha Ryan, took time to stroll the precinct instead of the Ovens River banks below where the trio would usually walk.
“We really liked the way it has turned out, especially the rusty effect,” Ms Styles said. “It’ll be a great community space.” “When we moved here two years ago, we looked at this space and thought it could be a nice summer feature to have here,” Mr Bowtell said.
“I guess that came after having spent some time in Benalla, and seeing how similar spaces were used there.
“We would walk down here nearly every day in summer, but to have this, it’ll be much nicer.”
University student Simon Russell was impressed.
“I think it’s come up really good, I grew up here, but it’s much better than what it used to be,” he said.
CHILLED OUT: Former Wangaratta resident Simon Russell wandered down to the precinct on his break from university in Melbourne.