Interactive cultural centre a step closer

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Jakeb WaddellBroome Advertiser

Business leaders at a high-end breakfast in Broome recently were given an update on plans for a world-class tourist attraction which would allow visitors to immerse themselves in Kimberley culture.

With the aim of increasing traffic into Broome, the Kimberley Centre for Culture, Arts and Story would educate travellers on the region’s history, people and art, and inspire them to explore the area further.

SMA Tourism consultant Simon McArthur spoke about the project at the Oaks Hotel earlier this month and said the Kimberley was missing an important attraction of this kind.

He said the interactive centre would include in-person storytelling, exhibitions, Dreamtime history, workshops, a restaurant, a gift shop, a performance space, cultural immersion training and visitor information.

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A state-of-the-art planetarium would be the main attraction, which would use technology to support stories from the region.

Yawuru chief executive Peter Yu said the centre would be a significant headline attraction, providing another compelling reason to visit Broome and the Kimberley.

“It will increase visitation in the shoulder months,” he said.

“Visitors will stay longer and disperse their spend deeper into the Kimberley.

“This will lead to stronger tourism businesses in Broome and the Kimberley and more Aboriginal employment on-country.”

Mr McArthur said a working group, led by Mr Yu, had engaged potential stakeholders and conducted market studies. Members of the group include representatives of Tourism WA, the Shire of Broome, the WA Museum, the Kimberley Development Commission and LandCorp.

Their research showed 95 per cent of respondents said the concept of an interpretation centre was moderately to extremely appealing, with 75 per cent willing to pay more than $25 entry.

It is understood the committee will now focus on a location for the centre, a full feasibility report and the ideal governance model. The centre is expected to be completed in six-eight years.

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