THE High Street upgrade is one step closer to becoming a reality after the project received environmental approval recently.
The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) found the proposal to be environmentally acceptable, provided conditions to reduce noise levels, retain mature trees and minimise the impact on black cockatoo habitat were met.
At the centre of the State Government plan is a roundabout at the intersection with Stirling Highway, as well as the widening of High Street’s median to separate traffic and trees.
The EPA considered the clearing of 0.67 hectares would not be significant on the carnaby’s cockatoo and the forest red-tailed black cockatoo.
“The proponent should not include black cockatoo foraging habitat within 10 metres of the road upgrade in the design and planting for proposal landscaping activities,” the report said.
The report also stated that the current design retains 178 large trees, totalling 72 per cent of existing large trees, and reduced the clearing of future potential breeding trees from 44 to 16 large trees.
A proposal to construct noise walls at 5m and 3.m high at the south westerly section of the Wood and High Street intersection was offered.
The EPA recommended community consultation to inform final dimensions and configurations of the walls.
Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettitt said they were pleased the EPA concluded the proposal was environmentally acceptable and that Main Roads could now proceed with the project.
“The reason for the City’s suggestion to utilise the existing cleared land on the golf course for the new road was to preserve as many mature trees as possible,” he said.
“It’s pleasing that the EPA has recognised the City’s commitment to urban greening, and the effort that has gone into retaining mature trees in the design of the project.”