Protecting the Hanging Rock precinct
DELWP and Macedon Ranges Shire Council are working in partnership to safeguard Hanging Rock precinct as a popular local and tourist destination and maintain its strong social, cultural and environmental values.
The landmark is famous for its rare volcanic formation situated between Woodend and Mount Macedon in the Shire of Macedon Ranges.
The project's first stage involved a comprehensive review [PDF File - 325.6 KB] by DELWP in June 2015 including extensive community consultation.
Currently stage two of the project involves the development of a master plan for the precinct, with Macedon Ranges Shire Council responsible for community and stakeholder consultation and delivery of the plan.
Council is also implementing the recommendations of the review to replace the former Hanging Rock Development Advisory Committee with an expert skills-based strategic advisory committee.
Vision paper and master plan
In September 2016 residents and visitors to the Macedon Ranges were invited to comment on a Vision Paper [PDF File - 3.1 MB] for the Hanging Rock precinct.
The Vision Paper is the first step in preparation of a new master plan for Hanging Rock Reserve and the East Paddock.
The Vision Paper describes what is valued about Hanging Rock precinct, as well as some issues and challenges, looking to opportunities for the future.
Submissions on the Vision Paper have closed and are being assessed. They will help inform the drafting of the master plan.
The aim of the master plan is to retain the precinct's international reputation as a popular local and tourist destination that has strong social, cultural and environmental values.
The draft master plan is expected to be submitted to council by the end of the year for consideration. Following endorsement by the Minister for Environment, Energy and Climate Change, the draft master plan will be available for public comment until March 2017.
An independent report found that integrated management of both the reserve and East Paddock is important to the long-term sustainability of the precinct.
The report identified key areas for improvement, particularly relating to governance, engagement with the community and clear strategic directions to identify the future investment needs for the precinct.
A key outcome of the review was that Macedon Ranges Shire Council retain management responsibility with a number of changes to ensure:
- Effective and sustainable management into the future while strengthening relationships with the community and all users of the precinct.
- Values, such as environmental and cultural, are protected as well as greater transparency and engagement with the community.
- Expressions of Interest for the new Hanging Rock Strategic Advisory Committee.
- Joint development between DELWP and Council of a new masterplan for the precinct (including East Paddock) in consultation with Traditional Owners and key stakeholders.