Two new accommodation developments will be built on Rottnest Island over the next three years as part of a strategy to attract more local and international visitors to the island.
Announcing the initiatives on Rottnest Island today, Tourism Minister Mark McGowan said a four-hectare site at Mt Herschel and a two-hectare site at South Thomson had been earmarked for sustainable tourism developments to cater for increased demand for accommodation on the island.
Mr McGowan said concept plans for both developments would be released for public comment within the coming months and development guidelines would be advertised for expressions of interest in March 2006.
“Both developments were taskforce recommendations and fit in with the Government’s objective to create a sustainable, financially viable holiday destination for Western Australians,” he said.
“We are fast-tracking the release of these sites as part of the Government’s Landbank initiative.
“Construction is expected to start shortly after the EOI process closes.”
The Minister said the developments would be subject to best practice sustainable design guidelines.
“We are looking to attract developers with a vision that matches the Rottnest Island ethos,” he said.
“The Mt Herschel development is anticipated to be an environmentally sustainable three to four-star standard accommodation facility in excess of 100 rooms, which will cater for people seeking short-stay accommodation, such as couples, families, seniors, conference delegates and interstate and international visitors.
“It will help meet high season demand and also attract those people who currently are not using the island due to a lack of facilities or accommodation.
“The Mt Herschel site is currently cleared for water run-off purposes, which, due to improved water management and the development of the desalination plant, is no longer necessary.
“A total of four hectares will be earmarked for development and the remaining 16 hectares will be rehabilitated to its natural state.”
The South Thompson development would cater to a different market wanting a wilderness experience.
“This development will be very low-impact and maintain all existing trees,” Mr McGowan said.
“It will also include boardwalks to protect flora and fauna habitats.
“The State Government is committed to seeing the development of world-class sustainable tourism facilities, which is in keeping with the island’s environmental values.”
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