Busselton Jetty Inc has launched a raffle to raise money for a groundbreaking underwater observatory after original funding fell short.

'Save the Whale': The planned Australian Underwater Discovery Centre on Busselton Jetty will have a unique whale head design. Picture: Supplied.
'Save the Whale': The planned Australian Underwater Discovery Centre on Busselton Jetty will have a unique whale head design. Picture: Supplied.

Busselton Jetty Inc is on a mission to raise enough money to build its new underwater observatory, after COVID complications inflated prices in construction. Shaped like a whale's head, the Australian Underwater Discovery Centre is planned to be the largest underwater observatory in the world.

After the pandemic raised costs in shipping and labour, the BJI was hit with a $20 million funding gap to build the attraction. Jetty chief executive Lisa Shreeve said it was hoping to raise the money through crowdfunding and corporate sponsorship.

"We have until February to decide if we have to give back $24m in government grants that this region may never see again, or we fight harder and build something we have spent 6 years planning," she said.

The organisation is reaching out to Western Australians who love the Jetty, asking for generous donations to its tax-deductible Busselton Jetty Environment Fund. It has also launched a raffle, with the first prize of a Nissan Leaf electric car.

First prize: A Nissan Leaf is on the cards in the raffle to raise funds for the AUDC at Busselton Jetty. Picture: Supplied.

First prize: A Nissan Leaf is on the cards in the raffle to raise funds for the AUDC at Busselton Jetty. Picture: Supplied.

A new Village and a Marine Research Centre are also in the plans for the jetty. Raffle tickets are sold at the Jetty or at busseltonjetty.com.au