A purpose-built, short-stay accommodation facility for Aboriginal visitors to Geraldton has reached a key milestone, with a request for tender advertised seeking an architect to design the project.
The State Government allocated $18 million under the Western Australian Recovery Plan to build the Geraldton Aboriginal Short Stay Accommodation facility to provide safe, affordable and culturally considered accommodation for Aboriginal people travelling into Geraldton from regional and remote communities.
The Geraldton Aboriginal Short Stay Accommodation facility – the fourth facility of its kind in Western Australia, is a response to meet the needs of Aboriginal visitors from remote communities across the Midwest Gascoyne region who travel to Geraldton to access a range of services or are visiting for cultural reasons.
The Department of Communities has worked closely with local stakeholders to identify a preferred site for the facility in the Geraldton suburb of Utakarra.
The completed facility is expected to comprise of a range of safe and secure single and family units including universal access rooms, ablution and laundry facilities, dining and recreation spaces, an administration and reception centre and manager’s quarters, all set in landscaped gardens.
The Department of Communities will manage the design of the facility, including community consultation, public tender and construction, in consultation with local stakeholders.
The project will create an estimated 96 construction jobs and is expected to inject more than $37 million into the Mid-West economy.
This follows other WA Aboriginal short-stay facilities operating in Kalgoorlie, Derby and Broome.
Details of the tender can be found at https://www.tenders.wa.gov.au
As stated by Housing Minister John Carey:
“This has been a very successful model in other parts of Western Australia and it’s fantastic this Geraldton project has reached an important milestone.
“This facility will promote local employment opportunities and support the outcomes of the Midwest Recovery Plan, forming part of the WA Recovery Plan.
“Research shows that up to 10 per cent of Aboriginal people in regional centres are temporary residents from surrounding remote communities who have travelled into town to access services that are only available in larger regional centres, visit family and to attend to shopping and personal business.
“The Geraldton Aboriginal Short Stay Accommodation facility will provide short-term accommodation for Aboriginal people visiting the city. The three existing facilities have provided more than 100,000 bed nights of accommodation to date.”
As stated by Aboriginal Affairs Minister Stephen Dawson:
“The new short-stay accommodation facility in Geraldton will be a welcome addition to Western Australia’s network of short-stay facilities, designed to keep Aboriginal visitors safe and secure in culturally considered accommodation.
“The project is a great example of the State Government’s commitment to Aboriginal people and the Midwest Gascoyne region.”
As stated by Geraldton MLA Lara Dalton:
“The McGowan Government has rolled out the Aboriginal Short Stay Accommodation model in a number of towns across regional Western Australia, and I am thrilled a facility for the city of Geraldton is one step closer.
“This is another example of the McGowan Government’s commitment to the people of Geraldton following the recent announcement of a $2.4 million contract to accommodate and support people experiencing homelessness in the city.”