Thousands of people gathered at the Busselton foreshore on Saturday to celebrate the precincts official opening after 10 years in the making.
The development was made possible through federal, state and local government funding with the children’s playground being the latest attraction to open.
Forrest MP Nola Marino said the $4.5 million project involved the construction of a stage, amphitheatre, market stalls, nautical-themed adventure playground, pathways and gardens along the Foreshore Parade.
Ms Marino said by generating more tourism, private investment and employment opportunities, this transforming infrastructure project would help deliver substantial ongoing economic growth to Busselton and the South West.
“In addition to the $19 million estimated to have been returned to the regional economy during the construction phase,” she said.
“The precinct’s new and improved facilities were also forecast to support increased spending from visitors by more than $2 million every year.
“These great outcomes are another example of the Liberal and Nationals’ government delivering on its commitment to invest in regional projects that will drive economic growth.”
Deputy Prime Minister and minister for infrastructure, transport and regional development Michael McCormack said the foreshore redevelopment would help make the Busselton region a world-class, waterfront destination.
“The new foreshore facilities will support growing events and festivals in the region, and would ultimately see more visitors taking advantage of what Busselton and its surrounds have to offer,” he said.
“Market stalls, regional boutiques and small businesses will also be better able to showcase their wonderful range of foods, art, crafts and regional produce.”
City of Busselton mayor Grant Henley said the redevelopment would also deliver significant social benefits to communities across the broader region.
“Improved community wellbeing and an overall greater sense of place are just some of the benefits the region is set to experience thanks to the range of new amenities, improved pathways and lighting delivered by the project,” he said.
“Now featuring new barbecues, shade areas, picnic benches and play equipment, we are expecting the foreshore’s improved recreational landscape will also attract more families and young adults to the area.”
More than 40 jobs were created during the project, with the revitalised precinct expected to support 13 ongoing jobs.
The project was jointly funded with the Liberal and Nationals’ government investing $1.5 million and the City of Busselton providing more than $3 million.
Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan joined stakeholders to celebrate the decade-long redevelopment of the Busselton foreshore.
Ms MacTiernan said the redevelopment project had enhanced the experience offered on the Busselton foreshore and offered commercial, retail, hospitality and tourism opportunities.
She said the development would continue to draw additional tourists and investors to the region, and provide economic benefits to WA.
“This has been a remarkable transformation and we commend the City of Busselton, along with the community and stakeholders, for delivering a bustling, world-class tourist destination,” she said.
“We look forward to the future evolution of the precinct through the development of short-stay accommodation and delivery of future works planned for the Busselton Jetty.”