Community shows support for marina
■ A 100-pen, non-cyclone-proof marina for Dampier is another step closer to reality after the Hampton Harbour Boat and Sailing Club completed an online feasibility survey which indicated strong community support for the project.
The new business case proposes that the marina be built in front of the HHBSC to cater for small commercial and recreational vessels.
Commodore John Lally said although the club’s plan was only in the feasibility stages, he felt confident development would go ahead by mid-2016.
“The survey showed 133 people were interested in leasing pens,” he said.
“There was also strong community feedback saying the marina would improve facilities in the community, promote tourism opportunities and increase the economic growth of Dampier. “We have now engaged a marine engineer to take the concept design to a more detailed design of the marina and its seawalls and a coastal engineer is on board to look at all the environmental considerations, including tidal and current flows.”
Mr Lally said negotiations were taking place between HHBSC, Rio Tinto and the City of Karratha to hand over existing leases to the City.
“This will include the extension of the Kaiser Marina Cyclone Hardstand to accommodate 100 vessels from the proposed marina,” he said.
The Pilbara News understands a sub-lease agreement between Rio Tinto and the City of Karratha will be the fastest option to acquire the land needed to begin development.
A Rio Tinto spokeswoman said it was too early to provide any details regarding specific proposals or timing of the project. She said the feasibility study would identify any challenges and the process required to move forward.
City of Karratha Mayor Peter Long said under the option of a sublease, the City would still assume responsibility for the marina area.
“The City’s focus is on helping get a marina facility at Dampier, which would be great for the community, marine services and tourism,” he said.
“The City will continue to discuss with Rio Tinto the terms of such a sublease and the longerterm option of a City reserve over the relevant portion of foreshore, and potentially seabed.”
Mr Lally said he was confident tenure negotiations, the detailed design and funding model for the project would be completed by the first quarter of 2016.
He estimated the marina project would cost between $11 million and $12 million.