Construction of the Department of Parks and Wildlife's new Bunbury headquarters has started, creating hundreds of new jobs over the next 10 years in the region.
Visiting the Koombana Bay site today, Environment Minister Albert Jacob said Bunbury would reap the benefits of the Liberal National Government's commitment to establishing the first State Government department headquarters outside of Perth.
"BCL Group has started the first stage of construction and this is very exciting news for the community," the Minister said.
"This degraded site on the city's doorstep will be transformed as part of an overall tourism precinct vision.
"The area will be enhanced with a permanent pedestrian link between the Leschenault Inlet and Koombana Bay. Bunbury residents will also benefit from walk trails, a new lookout, upgraded boardwalks and other public facilities."
Mr Jacob said the project would create 135 direct and indirect jobs during the construction phase, and 600 direct and indirect jobs once the headquarters were fully operational, generating an estimated $75 million per year for the region's economy.
"Not only will the development bring scientific, conservation and land management expertise to the region, it will also encourage local graduates and people interested in a career with the agency to stay in the area," he said.
Regional Development Minister Terry Redman said the development, made possible by a $28.9 million investment from Royalties for Regions, would be significant for locals as well as visitors to the region.
"Bunbury residents will be able to enjoy greater options for recreational activities with the improved parkland, walk trails, boardwalks and lookouts as part of the precinct that includes the new headquarters as well as the Dolphin Discovery Centre and Koombana Bay redevelopment," Mr Redman said.
"This investment is a major step forward for the region and is expected to reinvigorate Bunbury as the tourism gateway to the South-West."
Environment Minister's office - 6552 5800
Regional Development Minister's office - 6552 6700