$32 million Ningaloo Centre opens
Exmouth’s $32 million Ningaloo Centre has opened its doors to the public for the first time, finally giving residents the chance to critique the at-times controversial development.
WA Premier Mark McGowan opened the building which his party has used as a constant source of criticism of the previous government’s spending.
Mr McGowan said he was confident the Shire of Exmouth and other stakeholders had the building heading in the right direction.
“The important thing as Premier of the State is you have to make things work,” he said. “I am pretty sure Ian Fletcher has got it off to a good start and I want to make sure the work he has done to get it back on track is continued. It was an expensive facility but the main thing is you have to make it work effectively for Exmouth and the broader West Australian public.”
In his speech at the opening ceremony, Shire of Exmouth Commissioner Ian Fletcher said the building would become a cherished part of the community.
“The original objective was for the Ningaloo Centre to be a central hub receiving and supporting research outcomes from other nodes and relaying information from the community on that research,” he said.
“Sadly, this objective was lost as the centre got under way.
“I am pleased to say... we have got every-thing refocused on where it should be, namely a centre of excellence.”
North West Central MLA Vince Catania said he hoped Mr McGowan would become an advocate for the Ningaloo Centre after opening the building.
“I think it is a bit rich the Premier opening it given he has criticized it so publicly,” he said.
“He is the Premier though and a building like this should have the Premier opening it, but perhaps he can tone down his comments and not be so negative towards Exmouth now.
“This will become an absolute asset to the town and a drawcard for tourism from the region and around the world.”
Mr Catania said anyone with question marks over the facility should have a look inside the building before passing judgement.
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