High-tech concept a favourite for arts precinct

Busselton Dunsborough Times
Artist’s impression supplied by the City of Busselton.
Camera IconArtist’s impression supplied by the City of Busselton.

A multimillion-dollar, high-tech concept has emerged as the first choice of ratepayers for a proposed arts and entertainment hub incorporating Busselton’s Art Geo precinct.

A survey of two designs was undertaken last year, and the Kinetic — a design that involves moving rubber skin to create a changing perspective on the building’s facade and can be synced to sound, creating a choreographed display — has been chosen as the favourite.

The City of Busselton says the world-first work of art, dubbed BEACH, or Beach and Arts Entertainment Hub, would itself likely be a major regional drawcard.

“This development will consolidate the City of Busselton as the events capital of WA by providing an indoor facility with significant capacity,” Busselton Mayor Grant Henley said.

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The Kinetic would provide a 625-seat auditorium, function rooms and technologies that would convert the indoor space to a 1000-capacity indoor venue.

Progression of the $20 million project hinges on whether the City can obtain at least 50 per cent of funding through external sources.

A recent application for $10 million through the Federal Government’s Building Better Regions Funding Scheme, reported by the Times in October, has been rejected, but lobbying at State and Federal levels is ongoing.

“Council has made provision for the development and ongoing operation of the BEACH in the City’s long-term financial plan,” Cr Henley said.

“Subject to funding, the development is earmarked for commencement in the next four to five years.

“However, this could be brought forward if funding is secured earlier or pushed back if funding is not forthcoming.”

Estimates are the BEACH could attract up to 197,000 more visitors to Busselton each year and the City is optimistic that, coupled with aspirations for interstate flights from the

Busselton-Margaret River Regional Airport, it would open up the conference, convention and trade show market. From its first year of operations, the BEACH is tipped to have at least three events a week year-round.

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