May 8, 2020

This community development plan will be a document that is owned by the community. It will detail the town’s characteristics, driving forces that influence the town’s future, and community preferences for development priorities and principles over the next 10 years.

You have an opportunity to make a comment about the Outline of the Plan now.

The Outline of the Forrest & District Plan (a working title) will be available for community comment on the Forrest website from 1 May 2020.  Also available in MS Word format.

The next opportunity for comment will be the Draft Plan available from 1 June, 2020.

Please contact Emma Ashton at with comments or for more information.


A Plan to bring it all together

As we know, the communities of Forrest & District have been involved in extensive community consultation, particularly since 2015. We’ve been asked many times what we think about various things important to our community and our locality.

Whilst we might feel that we’ve been over-engaged, and wonder if we’ll ever see anything come of it, some of these engagements have allowed us to progress significant local projects. Such as the hand-over of 47 Grant Street (ex-DELWP site) to community management which is now well used as a Community Hub.

The Forrest & District Community Group has taken the initiative to bring all these consultations together to produce a community development plan, with a long-term view for Forrest & District’s future.

So, why write another plan?

1st, it’s an opportunity to combine all the studies and reports into one place; a synthesis report that articulates key themes, community values, concerns and aspirations.

2nd, we have support from Colac Otway Shire to do this. We are due for a review of our Small Town Community Infrastructure Plan, and they have agreed to work with us to incorporate this into our plan. Council also supports the process of developing this document as a tool for identifying broader community priorities. It will provide strategic direction for attracting funds for larger projects, such as the Forrest Mountain Trail Upgrades, waste water strategy, Forrest Common redevelopment, and the Forrest Community Hub redevelopment (Forrest Gateway to the Otways centre).

3rd, we currently have the resources to do this, and that is a rare opportunity. The Forrest & District Community Group have proposed and endorsed preparing the plan. The Forrest Gateway Project team, in collaboration with Deakin University’s Local SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) Program team will coordinate and write the plan.