The Murujuga Aboriginal Corporation (MAC) is taking significant steps forward in its bold plans to share the Pilbara’s Aboriginal culture with the world and set a new benchmark for Aboriginal tourism.
MAC is pursuing its ambitious plans to develop a multi-million dollar tourism precinct at Conzinc Bay, a boardwalk at Deep Gorge near Dampier and ranger-led tours of its world-famous rock art.
A recent funding commitment from the State Government of $1.33 million has enabled MAC to commission a Detailed Business Case and undertake the planning and preliminary design phase of its flagship tourism precinct at Conzinc Bay.
The project has been further boosted by a $4 million dollar contribution from Woodside.
The precinct will include a Living Knowledge Centre, campground, jetty and day-use facilities.
Recent funding from the Federal Government will mean the Corporation can progress a project with the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions to build a boardwalk to allow visitors to Deep Gorge to safely view the area’s ancient rock art.
Both projects are expected to bolster the bid to add Murujuga to the World Heritage List, which MAC is working on in conjunction with the State Government.
MAC CEO Peter Jeffries said the Corporation was taking significant steps to turn the Pilbara into a world class Aboriginal tourism destination.
“The development at Conzinc Bay will be a ground-breaking project which will provide an exciting opportunity for us to share our unique culture with tourists from all over the world,” he said.
“We believe our tourism projects will put Murujuga on the world map, and we hope it will set a new benchmark for Aboriginal tourism in Australia.
“The tourism precinct at Conzinc Bay and boardwalk at Deep Gorge will give us the opportunity to showcase our rock art, which is the largest and most diverse collection in the world.
“Increasing tourism in the Pilbara will also diversify the local economy and lead to more jobs on country for our people.”
Mr Jeffries said the tourism developments would have full state and federal heritage and environmental approvals, as well as an archeologist and MAC elders on site during ground works.
“We have been looking after our country for tens of thousands of years, and we will continue to do so, while also pursuing our plans to share our culture to foster a greater understanding of Aboriginal history and stories,” he said.
Mr Jeffries said MAC rangers had already started running tours of the rock art which gave them the opportunity to share their unique perspective with visitors.