Tantabiddi Taskforce - Redevelopment of Boat Launching Facility Ningaloo Reef

Published: Thursday, 6 February 2020 at 1:50:22 PM

Shire Chief Executive Officer Cameron Woods said Tantabiddi boat ramp was the only boat launching facility within the Shire on the west side of the cape, providing direct access to the world heritage listed Ningaloo Reef.

“The facility is used by both commercial and recreational boat users, and pressure on the facility has increased dramatically over recent years as visitor numbers coming to Exmouth to enjoy the unique Ningaloo experience have grown exponentially,” Mr Woods said.

“It’s important the Shire takes a lead role in ensuring the facility is developed to cater for the growing needs of the community and the information gathered from the study will help demonstrate its importance when seeking external funding for the planned future redevelopment.”

Mr Woods said the consultant would be contacting key stakeholders from government, business and recreational sectors over the next couple of weeks seeking input into the study.

“While the Tantabiddi Taskforce has committed to a timeline to undertake the environmental and business studies associated with the planning of a new facility, a possible construction date won’t be considered until all data from the necessary studies has been analysed, designs are developed, and community consultation has been undertaken,” Mr Woods said.

BACKGROUND

The Shire of Exmouth facilitated the development of the State Government led Tantabiddi Taskforce after presenting the Tantabiddi Boat Launching Facility report which identified that the current facility has 50% commercial use and that 80% of all use is by non-Exmouth residents.

Further, the facility is not meeting the needs of commercial and recreational users having been built for recreational fishing prior to the whale shark tourism phenomena which is critical to the State’s tourism industry.

The general charter of the Taskforce is to consider options and provide direction for the future management and development of the Tantabiddi Boat Ramp. The Taskforce is chaired by the Director General of the Department of Transport (DoT) and has senior executive representation from the Department of Biodiversity and Conservation and Attractions, Department of Transport, Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, the Shire of Exmouth and Tourism WA. 

The Taskforce has established an Agency Working Group (AWG) to identify the planning, investigations and approvals necessary to develop a facility to address the issues at Tantabiddi.

The AWG will determine a preliminary draft concept which will confirm the position and orientation of the new facility and address the operational issues currently present at the existing facility.

Once this draft concept has been determined DoT will lead further stakeholder consultation with commercial, recreational and community groups. This consultation will provide the AWG with the information needed to fine-tune the layout for the proposed land and maritime facilities to best suit the requirements for these groups. This will lead to the development of a preferred concept which the AWG will present to the Taskforce for their endorsement.

 

To date, the AWG has progressed the following actions:

  • Developed a Tantabiddi boat ramp user code of behaviour to assist in managing conflicting types of use so that the current facility can continue to meet needs whilst the redevelopment options and environmental planning matters are progressed.
  • Improved car parking, access and pedestrian and vehicle separation upgrades will be undertaken before Easter 2020
  • The DoT has installed wave and current monitoring equipment and a Tantabiddi wind weather station which has been gathering data over the last six months.

Members of the public can access tide and wave data via the following link https://www.transport.wa.gov.au/imarine/tantabiddi-exmouth-tide-and-wave.asp

 

If you would like to know more about the Tantabiddi Taskforce please contact the Shire of Exmouth.

The full Media Release can be found here.

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