Western Bay of Plenty District Council will be receiving more than $480,000 to help it enhance tourism opportunities in the district - a move that has been welcomed by the mayor.

It is among 25 councils across the country who are getting a share of $12 million from round three of the Tourism Infrastructure Fund.

Tourism Minister Kelvin Davis said the funding boost was aimed at helping councils and communities "make the most of tourism opportunities" and enhance visitor experiences.

Davis said tourism was a "vital part" of New Zealand's future and success.


"Our Government wants to ensure that tourism supports thriving and sustainable regions," he said.

Western Bay of Plenty District Council would receive $387,100 for a KiwiCamp facility at the TECT All Terrain Park to help manage the increased number of freedom campers visiting the area.

Another $96,860 will be provided for the installation of public toilets, carpark extension, signage and a bike shelter at Waihi Beach Dam.

Western Bay of Plenty District mayor Garry Webber. Photo / File
Western Bay of Plenty District mayor Garry Webber. Photo / File

Western Bay Mayor Garry Webber said it was ''really great news for our district and shows when you work co-operatively and collaboratively with central Government funding like this becomes available''.

Webber said he and the council's executive team had been working closely with the Tourism Infrastructure Fund executive and Minister Davis for some time over the council's funding request.

"I'm really pleased that our business case emphasising how vital this funding is has been successful. We have been planning these projects for some time, that includes talking about putting a Kiwicamp at TECT All Terrain Park for two years.

"As a district, we are a popular visitor and tourism destination, particularly Waihī Beach, Pukehina and the TECT All Terrain Park's mountain biking and cycleways, and these infrastructure projects will only enhance that further."

Webber said the council would decide at an operations committee meeting next month how much money it needed to contribute to the projects to get them off the ground.


The hope was both projects could be completed by October in time for next summer tourism season, he said.

The Tourism Infrastructure Fund provides up to $25m annually to develop tourism-related infrastructure that supports regions facing pressure from tourism growth.

Rotorua Lakes Council will receive $293,056 for the redevelopment of the toilet, pedestrian facilities, and parking improvements at Tarawera Landing Reserve.

Under round three funding allocations, 34 projects and six feasibility studies have been co-funded across the 25 councils.

* More information about the projects funded can be found on the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment website https://www.mbie.govt.nz/ Applications for round four funding grants open on August 1.