Tourism expert backs big loan

Friday, 5th May, 2017

By By Emily Roberts

A local tourism company has come out in support of City Council’s move to secure a $10 million loan.

New Broken Hill-based tourism business, Out of the Ordinary Outback, which owns Tri State Safaris, has welcomed opportunities to secure the city’s long-term infrastructure needs.

Owner Scott Smith said any investment into the city was a step in the right direction.

“Any project designed to enhance the vibrancy and allure of Broken Hill as a destination and outback gateway is a welcome move,” Mr Smith said. 

“Better services and infrastructure not only attracts more visitors but also lifts community pride so that locals become even better hosts for visiting tourists. 

“Better services will allow visitors, who are vital for the local economy, to see more, do more and spend more.”

Ordinary Outback is revamping the Silver Spade property (renamed The Argent), has opened the new Tri State Tours tourist centre in Argent Street, and is revitalising the former Mt Gipps Hotel near Broken Hill into visitor accommodation. 

At Council’s meeting last week, it was projected that the $10 million would be used to focus on footpaths, roads, accessibility infrastructure, and parks and gardens.

Council expects to be able to renew its infrastructure over the planning period at a greater rate than it is deteriorating.

General Manager James Roncon said they are being open and transparent about loan.

“We’ll be holding a series of engagement activities in the coming weeks surrounding our budget plans to ensure we’re being completely transparent about what we’re doing, and also clearly explain the steps we are taking,” he said earlier in the week.

“We’ll hold several public information sessions at the library with a presentation by our Manager Finance that we hope will clarify our current financial practices such as the mine rates shift, and also outline some exciting plans for the future that we think will hold this community in good stead financially for decades to come.”