VACANT land in Ararat East will be the site of a new housing development under a Victorian government scheme to attract more workers to the region.
The Green Lake Estate in Ararat East will house an additional 317 people once completed and create 134 full-time jobs for the region during construction.
The site in question, which sits in the Ararat East Development Zone, will cover 75 hectares of the total 161 hectares in the zone, with a goal of 160 houses built at the site.
Green Lake Estate is part of the Victorian government's $5 million Regional Workforce Pilots scheme, which aims to provide targeted support for areas with an increased workforce demand and trouble attracting them.
The Victorian government will also invest $300,000 to the housing project through the Regional Jobs and Infrastructure fund.
Minister for Regional Development Mary-Anne Thomas launched the initiative at the site in Ararat East and said housing shortages were an issue for Ararat, with the new housing boosting employment for the region.
"We understand that workforce and housing shortages are a real issue in regional towns - that's why we are investing in these new pilots to help solve these issues and boost employment across the state," she said.
"We are looking to address some of the challenges that are causing some of the workforce shortages, and it is probably fair to say that housing is one of the highest needs and one of the biggest problems we are facing.
"In Ararat we have a problem where we have more jobs than people to fill. This is a good problem to have, and I would much rather have this problem than the other way around."
Ms Thomas said the Victorian government funding would go towards "trunk infrastructure" for the housing development, such as sewerage works and utilities connection.
The minister was joined at the launch by Ararat City Council mayor Jo Armstrong and chief executive Dr Tim Harrison.
Cr Armstrong said the project would be key to unlocking Ararat's potential as a regional hub.
"Unlocking potential is absolutely key to our growth and development. We strive as a council to work towards a really robust local economy and we really want to develop those opportunities to attract new people to come and live here," she said.
"We are unashamedly ambitious at Ararat Rural City Council and the support we are receiving from the state government to unlock this potential is greatly valued and appreciated and we cannot wait for works to begin on this piece of infrastructure."
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