The Australian Underwater Discovery Centre
In 2017 Busselton Jetty Inc, a not for profit volunteer association, completed a Feasibility Study into building a large new Marine Discovery Centre at the end of the 1.8km heritage listed icon to add value to the existing Observatory which was built in 2003.
The current Observatory can only house 44 people and is one of only six in the world, the others being in Guam, Israel, Japan and two in New Zealand. Although the current Observatory has much larger windows than other natural observatories, the new Discovery Centre will feature a much larger viewing area, better technology, more interactive facilities, underwater dining areas, function space and more marine educational resources including a marine laboratory and facilities for school groups. It will also allow 140 people to go into the venue at once.
The project complements other work the Busselton Jetty is doing in creating more Artificial Reef to enhance the Fish Habitat Protection Area at the end of the Busselton Jetty.
This is a $32m project incorporating the Busselton Jetty Village which will include food and drinks options at the end of the Jetty with a commercial kitchen and bar. Due to COVID, Busselton Jetty Inc is fundraising for the project as it has suffered a $2.2m ticket sale drop since March 2020. The project has Deductible Gift Recipient Status so all donations over $2 receive a 100% tax deduction.
This project relates to Busselton Jetty’s marine ecosystem objective of “Protecting and preserving the natural environment in the vicinity of Busselton and the wider environs of Geographe Bay and educating people about the natural marine environment.”
Following community consultation in December 2020, the Cetacean Design (above image) was chosen as the final design for the structure.
The design phase is hoped to be completed by mid 2021 with the construction completion date estimated to be early 2023.
For further information on the project or to express involvement, click here.