"Unless you've been living under a rock, you've certainly heard about [Mandurah's] state-of-the-art waterfront redevelopment."
Those are the words from Mandurah mayor Rhys Williams, as the City gears up for one of its biggest transformations.
Worth $22 million, the City Centre Waterfront Project will revamp the eastern and western foreshores with a large-scale adventure play area, an enclosed floating pool, as well as upgrades to the Smart Street Mall.
The construction is part of the City of Mandurah's bold Transform Mandurah plan - a 10-year strategy to revitalise the city centre and diversify Mandurah's economy.
Last month, the Mandurah Mail reported on the agenda, which is broken down into four key parts.
The first is the redevelopment of the city centre and creation of a civic square around the Woolworths precinct and George Robinson Gardens, including a pedestrian mall and retail precinct.
Unless you've been living under a rock, you've certainly heard about [Mandurah's] state-of-the-art waterfront redevelopment.Mandurah mayor Rhys Williams
The second component of the plan includes establishing a waterways centre of excellence which would also be situated in the civic square.
The third element is a tourism precinct linking the Mandurah Ocean Marina to the city centre, including an "international standard" hotel and convention centre.
The final initiative is the activation of the Yalgorup National Park, establishing it as an ecotourism hub.
Over the coming weeks, the Mandurah Mail will cover each of the components in more detail, starting with the $22 million redevelopment plan which is already under construction.
Work started in May to demolish the current skate park on the western foreshore - making way for a competition facility of international standard later this year.
Nearby, in place of the fire training track, which is also currently being deconstructed, will be a new toilet block and a nature play park.
In an interview with the Mandurah Mail, Mr Williams said the project was tracking as expected, with the entire redevelopment to be completed by July 2021.
"There were some issues early on due to the impact of COVID on the construction timeline," he said.
"But that whole project is going ahead as it was always planned to and commencing within the timeline that we've adopted."
Construction is also expected to begin soon on the eastern foreshore, with an estuary pool one of the highlights of the plan.
The Smart Street Mall, which Mr Williams described as "tired", would also be upgraded to help activate one of Mandurah's key retail precincts and stimulate visitation and spending.
While the city centre was given a safety top-up more than two years ago when a new CCTV camera system was installed, the area hasn't seen a major infrastructure project for almost a decade.
The project, which is the largest ever waterfront redevelopment in Mandurah, also hopes to drive tourism to the Mandurah foreshore and create more local jobs.
Mr Williams outlined the details of the redevelopment in a video on Facebook last month.
"This is going to be incredible - an attraction for tourists and a great asset for local people to enjoy," he said.
"You might see it and think 'how does the development of foreshores really contribute to the economy?'
"This is about sending a really clear message to investors and the private market that something is happening in Mandurah, the narrative is changing and we are putting our money where our mouths are and investing in our public spaces."
The $22 million project is fully funded after the City of Mandurah received $7 million in November last year as part of a federal government commitment.
Canning MP Andrew Hastie promised the funding in May 2019 if the Liberal party was re-elected and the funds have since been sourced from the Commonwealth Development Grants Program.
In a previous interview with the Mandurah Mail, Canning MP Andrew Hastie said the plans for the foreshore redevelopment project had "big potential" for Mandurah.
"Mandurah is a beautiful place to live and a holiday destination of choice for thousands of West Australians," he said.
"This development will offer more recreation options for our families and young people, and help our community leverage Mandurah's natural advantages to expand local tourism and grow jobs.
"[It] is going to help capitalise on Mandurah's natural beauty to attract tourists to our area, as well as providing more play and social spaces for kids and families.
"I reckon my kids will be very excited when they see the final product."
This development will offer more recreation options for our families and young people, and help our community leverage Mandurah's natural advantages to expand local tourism and grow jobsCanning MP Andrew Hastie
The cash injection joined $10 million secured by Mandurah MP David Templeman through the state government as part of its Plan for Peel.
The City of Mandurah also committed $2.5 million for the eastern and western foreshore redevelopments and $2.5 million for the Smart Street Mall upgrades, bringing the total of the redevelopment up to $22 million.
The Mandurah Mail will continue to explore the four components of the Transform Mandurah plan in more detail over the coming weeks.
The next article will look further into the first key part of the city centre redevelopment and construction of a civic square and commercial hub in the heart of Mandurah.
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