GS3 - Gippsland Smart Specialisation Strategy: May 2020

Gippsland MTB has been directly engaged as a representative within the GS3 Project which is all about designing a place-based and long-term strategic approach for our region to become a more prosperous, sustainable economy and cohesive community. The GS3 Project is being led by the Latrobe Valley Authority and is being facilitated by Professor Bruce Wilson from RMIT University alongside Melbourne University. Over the last few months GMTB has been involved in a series of entrepreneurial, corridor, technology, innovation and business modelling discovery workshops. These bring together government, business, research, education and the wider community (us!) to assist in the design of a shared vision for the future competitiveness and social health and wellbeing of the Gippsland region. Click by the LVA and check it out!

“What does this have to do with me as a mountain biker?”

You may be asking yourself this, so let’s delve into a bit of background…

“…In August 2019, the Latrobe Valley Authority and Destination Gippsland agreed to collaborate in exploring opportunities for innovation in the visitor economy sector in Gippsland. It was agreed that this exploration would focus on the work undertaken by Destination Gippsland in developing its Destination Management Plan (DMP), particularly as it related to Tracks and Trails…”

David Elder was recently appointed to the Visitor Economy Smart Specialisation Strategy role at Destination Gippsland and has been our ‘go to guy’ to assist the GMTB vision of making Gippsland “A mecca for mountain biking” a reality. Through the Tracks and Trails Feasibility Study, the Destination Gippsland DMP and collaboration within the Gippsland Local Government Network, there is informed realisation of the opportunities that the Tracks and Trail networks that we venture out to ride for recreation and relaxation, are of themselves, worthwhile investing in for our future economic, health and social wellbeing. Fusing technology such as the Apps that we use during our rides and activities and structuring new design, construction and maintenance of these tracks and trails, including services for riders that could generate new innovations, income and jobs in Gippsland. What an amazing opportunity right here in Gippsland! Born of the places we’ve been exploring on bikes all of our lives!

Being involved in these collaborative discussions and putting our mountain biking passion at the forefront and driving our combined interest in riding our bikes right across Gippsland has always been our mission since we incorporated in 2008. Look at how far we have come! Haunted Hills Bike Park is to be constructed soon, Maryvale Pines is seeing an explosion in rider numbers, Erica trails are well maintained, riding super sweet and flowy, Blores Hill can be ridden all year round, Avon Wilderness is calling for your next back country adventure, Glengarry is simply ‘Somewhere Good’ to take your friends to explore, and Mt Baw Baw promises to be an epic journey in itself as that feasibility work continues to progress with consultants from TRC Tourism. Check them out here:

The GS3 Project is continuing amid current COVID-19 conditions, and there are many questions still to be answered and much work is required. We’re excited by this work as it will help to drive what mountain biking may look like for Gippsland in the future. It’s a great journey to be a part of and we’re all keen to get out there more than ever to ride our bikes all over Gippsland!

“We’ll see you rolling along our ‘wonderland’ of Tracks and Trails in Gippsland soon!”