A tender has been released by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) for the construction of a new boat ramp and jetty at the popular Canal Rocks site.
The current boat ramp has been operational since the 1970s, with new facilities constructed adjacent to the old ramp in 2002. Over the past decade, it has been at risk of closure due to safety concerns associated with its use.
The new boat ramp will facilitate recreational and commercial vessel operators, as well as the Naturaliste Volunteer Marine Rescue group.
The construction of the Canal Rocks boat ramp is supported by the Department of Transport through a Recreational Boating Facilities Scheme grant.
DBCA anticipates works to be completed by the end of the year, pending weather conditions.
Tender information can be viewed at tenders.wa.gov.au
Environment Minister Stephen Dawson said the McGowan Government supported recreational and commercial access to the State's coastal areas, with community safety the number one priority.
"I'm pleased we've been able to deliver an outcome that addresses safety concerns with the Canal Rocks boat ramp to ensure this vital facility remains open for all users, including volunteer marine rescue services." he said.
"Canal Rocks is a popular destination for visitors who are eager to view the striking coastline of the Leeuwin-Naturaliste ridge while surrounded by the powerful wind and waves that have shaped them over time."
Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said the government was committed to providing safe and reliable infrastructure for WA's boating community through the Recreational Boating Facilities Scheme.
"Given the enormous popularity of the Canal Rocks site, we're pleased to support the construction of the new boat ramp and jetty to ensure the area remains accessible for all boat users into the future."
Vasse MLA Libby Mettam said with so many visitors heading to the South West, it was great to see this vital infrastructure project progressed in the interests of public safety.
"This has been a long time coming and follows the McGowan government's backflip on their original decision to close this boat ramp, as a result of persistent community pressure," she said.
"This upgrade importantly provides crucial access for the Naturaliste Volunteer Marine Rescue group, but will also be utilised by commercial and recreational fishers, divers and tourism operators.
"I encourage local contractors to submit applications for the tender, which will provide local jobs and help stimulate the local economy."
South West MLC Colin Holt welcomed the announcement for the funding and tender release for the construction of the new boat ramp and Jetty at Canal Rocks.
"There has been almost a decade of safety concerns associated with this project, multiple reports and reviews by various government departments and the City of Busselton," he said.
"The Nationals recognise the importance of well-resourced boating facilities, that's why we used Royalties for Regions to inject an unprecedented level of investment into the Regional Recreational Boating Facilities Scheme.
"After continuous questions in parliament by myself and the Nationals WA and sustained lobbying by local groups the government has listened- a good job and a lesson in perseverance.
"This is a win for these local emergency services, recreational fishers, local boat owners, divers and tourism operators who have campaigned for such a long time.
"The Canal Rocks boat ramp and jetty is essential to these groups".