Jetty cash assured

Catherine MasseyBusselton Dunsborough Times
The two AUDC commitments came within hours of each other after Premier Mark McGowan announced his re-election plan for the seats of Bunbury, Vasse and Warren-Blackwood, with Labor pledging $9.5 million and the Liberal party pledging $10 million.
Camera IconThe two AUDC commitments came within hours of each other after Premier Mark McGowan announced his re-election plan for the seats of Bunbury, Vasse and Warren-Blackwood, with Labor pledging $9.5 million and the Liberal party pledging $10 million.

It seems the Busselton Jetty will benefit either way from the State election result with millions of dollars committed by the Liberal and Labor parties for the new Australian Underwater Discovery Centre.

The two commitments came within hours of each other after Premier Mark McGowan announced his re-election plan for the seats of Bunbury, Vasse and Warren-Blackwood, with Labor pledging $9.5 million and the Liberal party pledging $10 million.

Having already secured $13 million in Federal funding for the AUDC in October, the jetty is in a good financial position to finalise designs and engineering work and start construction.

Busselton Jetty chairman Barry House said he was delighted with the investment from both parties.

“We are confident the new AUDC will be a genuine iconic tourist attraction and generate the funds from ticket sales to fully sustain the maintenance and preservation of the jetty well into the future,” he said.

“The AUDC will support jobs and tourism now in the South West when it is most needed.”

Set to open in December next year, the new tourist attraction is expected to generate significant attention and pave the way for more interstate visitors to the region.

An abstract whale ‘Cetacean’ was the most popular of three designs following public voting and the new attraction is set to have the largest underwater window in the world.

Opposition regional development minister Steve Thomas said a Liberal commitment of $10 million from Royalties for Regions would ensure the “tourism icon” was realised.

Member for Vasse and opposition deputy leader Libby Mettam agreed and said it was fantastic to see a clear commitment from the “future” Kirkup Government.

“Supporting this project is critical to the growth of tourism across both the South West Region and Busselton Margaret River expansion project and we are excited at the opportunities and visitor numbers such a world-class tourist attraction like this will deliver,” she said.

Ms Mettam said the opposition’s promise to the AUDC would also support the Busselton Margaret River Airport and the region’s walking and cycling trails.

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