The Surf Coast, gateway to national heritage site the Great Ocean Road, is now officially protected from overdevelopment.
To protect the Surf Coast's landscape and lifestyle, an area of the it has been declared a distinctive area which the Victorian government says will protect it from urban sprawl.
Planning minister Richard Wynne on Tuesday declared Torquay, Jan Juc, roughly 100 kilometres from Melbourne CBD, and its surrounds as Distinctive Areas and Landscapes under the planning act.
The declared area covers Torquay and Jan Juc, and expands along the coastline from the Great Otway National Park to Breamlea Flora and Fauna Reserve.
“We won’t be letting greedy developers turn our precious Surf Coast into the Gold Coast,” member for South Barwon Darren Cheeseman said.
“We promised to protect it and we’re delivering.”
The declared area also covers the hinterland including the landscape setting of Bellbrae.
The region has experienced increasing urban development pressure, which government says has been focused in Torquay-Jan Juc.
The state government says it will now work on a policy setting for a 50-year vision to guide development controls for the region.
The policy is expected to deliver a framework to ensure the beaches, coastal biodiversity, and tourism of the Surf Coast region will continue to be of “special significance”.
The final planning policy statement is due mid next year.