03/11/2020 - 17:00

Mid West projects receive $1m

03/11/2020 - 17:00

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Year-round production of fresh produce and improved water quality are two aims in the latest $1 million round of Regional Economic Development (RED) Grant funding.

Mid West projects receive $1m
A Water Corporation seawater desalination plant. Photo: Gabriel Oliveira

Year-round production of fresh produce and improved water quality are two aims in the latest $1 million round of Regional Economic Development (RED) Grant funding.  

Targeted more broadly at job creation in the regions, two previous rounds of RED grants have so far contributed $1.5 million to 12 projects in the state's Mid West.

In the latest round, $1.04 million will be shared between 10 projects positioned in tourism expansion, agricultural development, and telecommunication infrastructure installation.

About $230,000 will be allocated towards enabling year-round production of fruit and vegetables through transitioning horticulture production to full hydroponics at the Sun City Produce in Geraldton.

Hydroponics is a type of horticulture in which plants are grown using mineral nutrients from a water-based solution, rather than soil.

A reverse osmosis desalination plant will also be funded to improve water quality and boost production.

Tourism accommodation options in the Mid West will be expanded in a bid to attract more visitors, with Greenhead Caravan Park, Seaspray Beach Holiday Park, and Rainbow Jungle in Kalbarri receiving $383,700 for upgrades.

The Mid West will also receive $67,000 to improve road safety through installing the first heavy vehicle brake tester in the region.

Popular windsurfing location Coronation Beach will have a telecommunications tower installed with $23,300 invested by the Shire of Chapman Valley to provide WiFi and internet services aimed at bolstering safety and encouraging visitors to promote the location online.

Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan said the grants helped to develop businesses and key industries such as agriculture and tourism in the Mid West.

“These Mid West projects have a strong sense of promoting the communities where people live and work alongside diversifying businesses to encourage more visitors to the region, which will deliver flow-on benefits of economic growth and boosting local job opportunities,” she said.

A further $5 million has been committed by the state government to extend the initiative for an additional year.

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