The City of Casey has decided to no longer host the annual Cranbourne GP Run event, effective this year.
The event has not been held for the past two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which had also caused the cancellation of the Moto GP at Phillip Island.
Over time, Council has faced escalating traffic management costs to manage the event, with approximately 60 per cent of the $93,000 event budget required to manage the closure of the South Gippsland Highway during the event.
The population in and around Cranbourne has also grown since the inception of the event, meaning the event has a significant effect not only on traffic travelling through Cranbourne on the South Gippsland Highway, but also the surrounding road network.
Local traders have also raised concerns about the difficulty customers face trying to access businesses in the area.
City of Casey Chief Executive Officer, Glenn Patterson said Council was aware that many in the community valued the event, and the decision to cancel it was not made lightly.
“The idea for this event was born 24 years ago in response to road safety concerns about a mass of riders heading to Phillip Island for the Grand Prix,” Mr Patterson said.
“However, Council must take a strategic approach to how we support businesses and support the local cultural and tourism industry in a way that will bring the greatest benefits.
“Council has taken into account the significant costs of running the event, the disruption to local traffic and we are also aware of the frustration experienced by a number of Cranbourne businesses, who face considerable disruption due to the road closure, without seeing an increase in patronage.
“We will be retaining this event budget and are investigating options for another community event in the Cranbourne area that offers greater enjoyment and more benefits to residents and ratepayers, with details to be announced at a future date,” Mr Patterson said.