Shire looks in on Westport work

Keen to stimulate commercial development at its planned Waterloo Industrial Park, the Shire of Dardanup is showing a big interest in work by the State Government’s Westport Taskforce to capture economic development opportunities for the South West through better management of freight management and collaboration.

Dardanup Shire President Mick Bennett and CEO André Schönfeldt attended a community event organised by Westport in Bunbury this week to learn more about the potential role Bunbury Port could play in handling Perth and the South West’s future freight task.

Cr Bennett said one of Waterloo Industrial Park’s biggest assets was its close proximity to major transport routes including the Bunbury Port and future northern section of the Bunbury Outer Ring Road, which according to current plans, runs right through the middle of the park.

“Economic development at Waterloo will be a key driver in the successful roll-out of our neighbouring new city, Wanju,” Cr Bennett said.

“The Shire of Dardanup is therefore very willing to work in partnership with organisations and government agencies to ensure the South West – through capitalising on growth opportunities for Bunbury Port and its users – secures a bright future for the local economy and businesses.”

Westport has put forward a list of 25 port and supply chain scenarios to handle WA’s growing shipping container trade for the long-term, four of which feature Bunbury Port.

Cr Bennett said he was hopeful containerisation would occur at Bunbury Port as it would create significant import and export opportunities for the region.

“I am impressed with Westport’s thorough evidence-based process and that we had the chance to provide input,” said Cr Bennett.

“Even if Bunbury Port is not the final option recommended by Westport, we take comfort in knowing that it was an objective and robust process and there are plenty of opportunities for Bunbury and surrounding areas that have come out of the Westport process for us to focus on.”

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