Update September 2011
The City of Busselton recently secured close to $10 million for foreshore development projects through the Royalties for Regions grant scheme. This latest contribution of $6million by the State Government represents a significant kick start to the estimated $27 million dollar Busselton foreshore project.
Stage 1 of the Busselton Foreshore Redevelopment was the $28 million refurbishment of the Busselton Jetty with Stage 2 being the landside redevelopment of the foreshore.
Refurbished Finger Jetties
Approximately $500,000 will be directed toward re-creating the original U-shaped swim jetty which provided swimmers with a protected outdoor swimming enclosure years ago. The restored swim jetty will add to the charm of the foreshore area and provide recreational, competitive and learner swimmers with a safe ocean swimming area.
Scout Road Jetty will also be restored. Currently in poor condition, this high-use jetty is a popular viewing platform during the Busselton Half Marathon, the Busselton Jetty Swim and Geo Race Week events. This jetty also provides an important maintenance function for loading barges and supplying and maintaining the Busselton Jetty.
The refurbishing of the West Swim and Scout Road Jetties will commence as soon as weather permits and will represent the start of the Busselton Foreshore Revitalisation.
Just over $1million will be directed toward installing coastal defences to protect the Busselton Foreshore reserve from coastal erosion, west of Queen Street. This work needs to be done prior to the development of the green space areas north of Signal Park. It will involve strategic placement of rock material to protect the dune embankment. Phase 1 will focus on the upgrade of the Coastal Defences from Gale Street to Queen Street. The Shire estimates that this work will be completed in early November 2011.
Green Space Family-focused Facilities
Around $2 million will go towards creating a family-focused area north of Signal Park. This area will be characterised by plenty of grass and shady trees, barbeque facilities and boardwalks. In keeping with community feedback, the intention is to create a relaxed environment suitable for all ages with easy access to the beach.
Construction of the adjoining Promenade, shelters, BBQs, parking area realignment and landscaping within Signal Park will begin in March 2012, following the peak tourist season.
Ensuring a practical and aesthetic link between the foreshore reserve area and Queen Street’s emerging Cultural Precinct is an important component of this development stage. Approximately $1 million will be directed toward ensuring the safe and easy movement of pedestrians down Queen Street, across Marine Terrace and into the foreshore area.
This involves the building of new walkways to encourage foot and bicycle traffic. Effectively this paved walkway creates a town-foreshore spine complete with power points for market stalls, decorative lighting, seating and public artwork.
A Vibrant Commercial Precinct
The area along Marine Terrace between Queen and Brown Street is earmarked as a future commercial precinct with retail outlets and short-stay holiday. A corporate event and conference facility is also proposed for this area. Construction remains subject to funding and is part of Phase 3. An expression of interest process with the private sector will be undertaken.
It is anticipated that the final part of Phase 1, the creation of a commercial lease site to the west of the Equinox café will occur July 2012.
Planning for Youth
The Shire has also made a separate application for funding to the Federal Government under the Regional Development programme to create an area along the Busselton foreshore specifically for youth. The vision for this area, which is located near the current skate park and Yoganup Park, includes the construction of youth centre, areas for casual meetings, skate obstacles and basketball courts.
The funding application to Regional Development Australia was recently rejected by the Federal Government and the Shire is now seeking alternative funding sources for this part of the project.
An area of the foreshore, close to the beach and the Scout Road Jetty, will include a new community building to house Busselton Surf Lifesaving Club(BSLC) and the Busselton Sea Scouts.
The building will also have shared indoor/outdoor spaces that can be used by youth groups, such as Southern Rip and hired out for events such as the WA Ironman and Jetty Swim.
The majority of the precinct will be taken up with a challenging Skate/BMX park integrated into the foreshore landscape to create an interesting/interactive area for more activities and an adventure play park.
Convic Designs has been engaged to prepare a design concept for the skate park and to consult with BSLC, Sea Scouts and Southern Rip on the footprint for the new building.
Shire Officers have recently held meetings with various youth groups and schools in Busselton and Dunsborough whilst the Convic representatives held additional meetings in the south west.
Tennis Club Relocation
While there’s been some debate about the relocation of the Busselton Tennis Club, a solution which meets stakeholder needs has been found. After lengthy consultation with tennis club representatives, the Busselton Tennis Club has agreed to relocate to purpose-built premises on Barnard Park Reserve. This funding enables the Shire to undertake more consultation with key stakeholders, develop plans for a new tennis centre and prepare for the club’s relocation. It is anticipated that the Busselton Tennis Club will be relocated within the next 3-4 years.
The area where the Busselton Tennis Club is currently located is earmarked as a future commercial precinct with retail outlets and short-stay holiday accommodation within a landscaped setting. A corporate event and conference facility is also proposed for this area. Building construction in this area remains subject to funding.