Bridge to connect Success and Atwell back on council agenda

Tarun Dewan where the Success side of Bartram Road ends. Photo: Jon Hewson. d490811 communitypix.com.au.
Tarun Dewan where the Success side of Bartram Road ends. Photo: Jon Hewson. d490811 communitypix.com.au.

A PROPOSED bridge connecting Success and Atwell via Bartram Road was back on the agenda at the City of Cockburn’s council meeting on Thursday night.

The project made headlines in 2016 after the City of Cockburn downgraded the proposed thoroughfare over the Kwinana Freeway from a traffic carriageway, pencilled in to be built between 2024 and 2028, to a pedestrian crossover tentatively scheduled for construction between 2022 and 2025.

During Thursday’s meeting, councillors passed an officer recommendation that the City continue to campaign the State Government for the construction of either a vehicle or pedestrian bridge as early as possible.

According to the council agenda, building a vehicle bridge would be the responsibility of Main Roads WA while construction of a pedestrian/cycle bridge would fall to the City.

“City officers…consulted with MRWA on the current planning horizon for the bridge project and received notification on October 1 that the bridge crossing at Bartram Road was not in the 2031 traffic network model,” Cockburn’s report read.

“In terms of the City Regional and Major Roadworks Plan 2018-2031, it is now clear that the state will not be constructing the bridge crossing in this time frame.

“Should council wish to do so, the entire cost would need to be funded by council.”

A petition of more than 260 signatures supporting the bridge, mainly from Success residents, was given to the City in July.

Petition organiser and Success Residents Association president Tarun Dewan, who unsuccessfully ran for an East Ward position at the 2017 local government elections, said residents were overwhelmingly in favour of the bridge’s construction.

“It aims to address the biggest issue in Cockburn, namely traffic congestion,” he said.

“The freeway isolates these two neighbouring suburbs, particularly for school access, and the proposed bridge will encourage school kids to walk/ride to and from school and bring friends from both sides closer together.

“I support the view that the council should continue to talk to the State about funding this bridge in the future-if there is a big enough ‘why’, ‘how’ can be taken care of I believe.”

On the other side of the freeway, Harvest Lakes Residents Association president Robert Kellar said they were also in favour of a bridge, but had some reservations.

“The preferred option is for a pedestrian/bicycle bridge, we do not believe a vehicular crossing is a real necessity,” he said.

“A Bartram road bridge for vehicular traffic would become a heavily used alternative to already congested intersections at Success and Cockburn south.

“This is a residential and school area and poses significant safety and noise concerns .”