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Bairnsdale and District

The gateway to East Gippsland, Bairnsdale is a thriving provincial centre of 12,000 people set on the banks of the Mitchell River.

Once home to steam boats and traders who arrived in the area in the 1850s, Bairnsdale is now the commercial and administrative hub of East Gippsland Shire offering history, the arts, culture and retail. The town’s rich heritage can be found throughout the town, including the rotunda in the centre of town, the spectacular murals and architecture of St Mary’s Church, and Bairnsdale Court House, which is noted for its 19th century architecture. It is the largest town in East Gippsland by both residential population and business size.


Council recently celebrated the completion of several major projects in the area, including the award-winning East Gippsland All-Abilities Playground, the state-of-the-art Bairnsdale Library and the redevelopment of the Nicholson Street Mall retail precinct. These projects contribute to Council’s vision of building a thriving, vibrant and liveable East Gippsland.


Learn more about Council’s plans for Bairnsdale and District by clicking on the links below.

Re-Imagining Bairnsdale Master Plan and Nicholson Street Upgrade

Building a Better Bairnsdale

East Bairnsdale and Lucknow Structure Plan

Walking and Wayfinding Report

Bairnsdale CBD Car Parking Strategy

Bairnsdale CBD Parking Map

Howitt Park Master Plan

East Bairnsdale Drainage Project

For further information about plans and projects in East Gippsland Shire, please email feedback@egipps.vic.gov.au, phone 5153 9500 or sign up to receive updates by email.

Re-Imagining Bairnsdale Masterplan & Nicholson Street Upgrade 

The Bairnsdale CBD Master Plan, ‘Re-imagining Bairnsdale’, was formally adopted by Council at the May 2013 East Gippsland Shire Council meeting. 

The Master Plan sets out a framework for the revitalisation of the CBD over the next 10 years, providing clarity about how the Bairnsdale CBD public realm will be improved over time and sets out a consistent approach to design elements and infrastructure. Actions include proposals for the improved design of important public spaces, a street tree planting program, public realm design guidelines, and a program for increasing the range of activities in core areas.

Nicholson and Service Streets are an important part of the Bairnsdale CBD, providing the East Gippsland community with access to a range of businesses and services. The concept designs for Stage Two of the Re-imagining Bairnsdale Project (Nicholson Street Upgrade) identifies streetscape improvements to this area. 

Public consultation for the Nicholson Street Update concluded in June 2016, with final master plans expected to be underway in March 2017.

For further updates about this exciting vision for Bairnsdale, sign up to receive project updates by email.


Re-imagining Bairnsdale Master Plan 

Volume 1 Analysis and Discussions (PDF 6.16MB)

Volume 2 Public Realm Works, Priorities and Costs (PDF 7.72MB)

Nicholson Street Upgrade

Building a Better Bairnsdale

The Draft Bairnsdale Growth Strategy has been prepared for Council by consultants to guide the growth and development of Bairnsdale over the next 20 years.


It contains recommendations for a growth boundary, future residential growth areas, improvements to existing neighbourhoods, revitalisation of the central business district, commercial and industrial growth and a range of other matters.


Growth Strategy Volume 1, 2009 (PDF 13.1 Mb)
Background Analysis Volume 2 (PDF 12.8 Mb)


East Bairnsdale and Lucknow Structure Plan

Council, in collaboration with the State Government, has finalised a Structure Plan for the East Bairnsdale and Lucknow precinct. This work outlines how the precinct should develop over time, including the existing industrial areas along the Princes Highway and McMillan Streets and the farming/vacant land north of the Princes Highway.


East Bairnsdale Structure Plan November 2013 (PDF 40.92 Mb)

Walking and Wayfinding Report

Council is doing a project to improve and promote walking in Bairnsdale’s central business district. This project aims to make Bairnsdale a “walkable city”, with better signage, information about local attractions that are accessible on foot and improvements to the quality and safety of pedestrian facilities.


Draft Walking and Wayfinding Report, 2011 (PDF 1.6 Mb)
Summary of Recommendations Walking and Wayfinding Report (PDF 90kb)


Bairnsdale CBD Car Parking Strategy

The Bairnsdale CBD Car Parking Strategy aims to better use the existing car parking spaces and ensure future parking demands are met and appropriately funded. It also aims to reduce traffic congestion and improve pedestrian accessibility.


The strategy will, among other things, help the Shire identify preferred locations for additional on street and off street parking. It will also help determine where changes may need to be made to parking restrictions, and identify priority locations for additional parking enforcement and streetscape upgrades.

Bairnsdale CBD Parking Strategy - Data Analysis (PDF 3.63 MB)

Bairnsdale CBD Parking Strategy - Parking Plan (PDF 2.19 MB)

Bairnsdale CBD Parking Strategy - Implementation Plan (PDF 1.29MB)


Bairnsdale CBD Parking Map

East Gippsland Shire Council has developed an easy to read parking map to assist motorists in understanding the various parking locations in the Bairnsdale CBD and the restrictions that apply.


Bairnsdale CBD parking map (PDF 1.96MB)


Howitt Park Master Plan

The Howitt Park Master Plan (November 2015) provides a framework to guide planning over the coming 10 years and to also strengthen the links between Council and the community.

Howitt Park Master Plan (PDF 3.1MB)

East Bairnsdale Enabling Infrastructure (Drainage) Project


The Australian Government, Victorian Government, East Gippsland Shire Council and private businesses have been working together to improve drainage in the Lucknow area north of the Princes Highway. This work has not only considered current needs, but also a future in which the land north and south of Lanes Road is developed.


The design has been finalised, concluding work from the past two to three years, and funding of $2.73 million from the Australian Government and State Government, will see a much needed project move into its construction phase. Council is also contributing funds towards the project, whilst Patties Foods Ltd, and Broadlands Estate have contributed land and other services.


East Gippsland Council has issued a number of fact sheets over the past three years detailing the progress of the design work; the reasons behind the concept; what the project will achieve; how the project will be delivered; advising that a construction contract has been awarded and that a Construction Environmental Management Plan has been finalised.


View photos of Stage one


Download Fact Sheets


Fact Sheet 8

Fact Sheet 7

Fact Sheet 6

Fact Sheet 5

Fact Sheet 4

Fact Sheet 3

Fact Sheet 2

Fact Sheet 1


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