BLACK Hill lookout could be redeveloped with new facilities including public toilets, barbecues and bus parking under a proposal by the Ballarat City Council.
The council will consider a report on long and short-term works for improving the neglected site at its meeting tomorrow.
Two long-term options have been investigated by the council and could return the lookout to its former condition or better.
The cheapest option would cost $468,000 to return the car park to its previous state and make vehicle access safe in the short to medium-term.
But a second option, costing $600,000, would redevelop the closed-off section of the car park and lookout as recreational space and provide improved facilities.
The lookout would get new public toilets, a viewing platform, and a car park with a turning area for buses. There would be improvements to infrastructure such as barbecues, shelters, park furniture and signs.
In August, councillor Samantha McIntosh said the council needed to work out how to deal with the deteriorating site. She called for an update on the landmark.
“It still is in a really sad state for tourism, for locals and for recreation,” Cr McIntosh said.
The previous Ballarat City Council voted to develop a management strategy for the area, but there has never been a long-term vision for the site.
The area was shut down in 2008 after a fist-sized hole opened in its access road.
The council has started preparing a management plan, which is due for completion by the end of summer next year.
In the short term, the council is working to improve the “presentation and amenity” of the lookout and car park area.
The proposed development of the reserve as a mountain bike park will also be considered as part of the council’s master plan.