Libs eye marina, West End

Taylar AmoniniNorth West Telegraph

WA Premier Colin Barnett says the Town of Port Hedland should hand over the development of the Spoilbank Marina and West End to the State Government if the Liberals win the State election.

During a weekend visit to the Pilbara, Mr Barnett discussed the plan with Town of Port Hedland Mayor Camilo Blanco and Port Hedland Chamber of Commerce president Jim Henneberry, proposing the creation of a Port Hedland Development Corporation.

While $112 million State funding for the development of the Spoilbank has been committed by Mr Barnett’s Cabinet, he believes unless the planning and development of the marina and West End is put into the hands of the State, Port Hedland’s development will “stay stagnant”.

Mr Blanco said the idea of a development corporation was something he had not ruled out.

“My comment to (Mr Barnett) was so long as the residents of the West End are protected, then I’m more than happy to have that conversation ... if it did occur, it would first have to come to (the) council as we would have to relinquish our control and responsibility when it comes to planning,” he said.

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Port Hedland Chamber of Commerce president Jim Henneberry said a Port Hedland Development Corporation would only enhance the development of the town and the area’s tourism potential.

“A commitment from Mr Barnett means that our West End dust issue can finally be resolved ... we want to attract cruise liners, to have an amenity for people who come here and we want Port Hedland to be a tourist destination. We can only do that by building the attractions.”

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