Portarlington ferry to continue

Funding for the Portarlington to Docklands ferry will continue for another four years (Supplied)

People across the Bellarine can continue using the Portarlington to Docklands ferry and reduce the number of cars on the road thanks to state government support.

Member for the Bellarine Alison Marchant announced on May 21 that the Portarlington Ferry would be funded through a $30 million investment in the 2024-25 state budget.

Ms Marchant said the funding would continue the service for another four years to provide a long-term convenient transport alternative.

“We’ve continuing to invest in this important and direct transport link between the Bellarine and Melbourne,” she said.

“This is a great outcome for the Bellarine community and the thousands of visitors who travel here every year.”

The Portarlington Ferry was launched in 2017 and attracted 110,000 users during its pre-COVID peak, with a high of more than 15,000 passengers in January.

Close to 128,000 passengers used the service in the last 12 months, with more than 19,000 in January this year.

Ferry passengers will also benefit from a revised bus network starting in June, with the public bus timetable aligning better with the ferry service.

Work will continue to be undertaken for the long-term sustainability of the service following a $10 million upgrade to Portarlington Pier in 2022.

The work included providing all-weather access from the foreshore to the ferry service, a strengthened pier head, and a new, accessible, low landing for improved water access.