A BAYSWATER action group has called for an increase in the height of a proposed noise wall on Redlands Street and a wall of trees to cope with the effects of the Tonkin Highway upgrade.
The highway extension is part of the $1.12 billion NorthLink WA project, which will provide a transport link between Morley and Muchea.
According to contractors John Holland, the wall was expected to be 3m to 3.8m tall but Houghton Park Action Group (HPAG) believes it would be built 1.5m below the road level.
John Holland contractors told residents at a meeting on March 13 the wall will be built below the road level because there was a water table issue.
HPAG gathered a 70-signature petition requesting the City of Bayswater write to Transport Minister Rita Saffioti on their behalf about the issue.
Ms Saffioti said Main Roads was aware of the issues and was working with the contractor to address residents’ concerns relating to noise mitigation.
Cr Chris Cornish said he tabled the petition at last week’s council meeting and council passed an “urgent motion” to write to Ms Saffioti and relevant bodies about increasing the height of the proposed wall.
“The residents clearly have a genuine and warranted concern. Because of the road height being raised so much, the proposed wall will probably not even stop the visual impact of the traffic, let alone the audible impact,” he said.
“It’s important for this to be done properly in the first instance rather than relying on some retrospective action.”
At the council meeting, Cr Barry McKenna said that Bassendean MLA Dave Kelly had advised it would be “incredibly difficult” to replace a noise wall once the proposed smaller one is built.
Cr Dan Bull said 130 trees had been removed as part of the NorthLink WA project.
HPAG’s Barry Kramer, who started the petition, said residents were concerned over noise and emissions from semi-trailers driving along the site.
“The main concern is the height which to us is certainly not high enough, which makes it ineffective,” he said.
“We need that (proposed) wall extended at least another 2m to make it effective or put a curve on the top of it to throw the noise back again. The height of Tonkin Highway (extension), we were never advised they were going to lift the highway to the height of the existing wall.”
HPAG’s Karen Ring said the contractors should be replacing trees that have been demolished.
Another member Julian Chong said the price of properties depreciated following the construction works.