IT is pleasing to see that the State Government has allocated $40 million to replace the Old Mandurah Bridge. The purpose and potential of any bridge is directly linked to the feeder roads in its vicinity.
If these are not safe, efficient and user friendly then the bridge is compromised. For this reason it is important that the planning now under way has an in-depth look at the main roads leading to the bridge.
People travelling south away from the main town centre to Erskine, much of Halls Head, Falcon and beyond, use either Leslie Street or Old Coast Road to access Mandurah Road.
Going via Leslie Street is longer, less direct and slower than using the Old Coast Road. However, because there are traffic signals at the junction of Leslie Street and Mandurah Road it is safer.
Old Coast Road becomes problematic when you reach its junction with Mandurah Road.
If it was safer and easier to access Mandurah Road via Old Coast Road then many people would cease using Leslie Street to head south. (And those that use the back streets of Halls Head to avoid the Old Coast Road/Mandurah Road intersection would have an option).
Due to their feeder road status, any change to traffic patterns on these roads is going to impact use of the bridge.
There are plans ultimately to have traffic signals at the Old Coast Road/ Mandurah Road intersection. With a new bridge and the traffic signals most people, I’m sure, would choose Old Coast Road over other alternative routes.
It would seem to me to make a lot of sense to include the traffic signals in the planning and budget for the new bridge.