THE latest concept for the $100 million Murdoch Drive Connection have been described as a “compromise” by Melville Mayor Russell Aubrey.
A public information session held in North Lake on August 19 attracted about 350 people, with feedback prompting change to the previous plan which had access to Bibra Drive from Farrington Road stopped via the introduction of a cul-de-sac.
Comments to Main Roads WA suggested the cul-de-sac would compromise access for residents and business and made “access between Bibra Drive and Farrington Road more convoluted”.
A Main Roads spokeswoman said the design for the connection, which could carry 50,000 vehicles by 2021, now looked settled.
“We consider the current concept to be the optimum solution and are proceeding with the project on this basis,” she said.
Mr Aubrey said the previous plan could have potentially channelled thousands of cars wanting to access Cockburn through Melville.
“The compromise is they’ve made it slightly harder to access Farrington Road (from the Murdoch end) but easier from Bibra Drive,” he said.
City of Cockburn engineering and works director Charles Sullivan said the council supported the intersection of Bibra Drive- Farrington Road remaining open, adding “local road network connectivity depends on this”.
But he said the City did not support the link’s connection to Hope Road.
“The City is working with MRWA to see if there are modifications that will eliminate this connection but still ensure the project objectives are fulfilled,” he said.
The $100 million extension announced in May will link Murdoch Drive with the Kwinana Freeway and Roe Highway, helping motorists get to Fiona Stanley Hospital and the Murdoch Activity Centre.
At the time, the City of Melville welcomed the announcement for the precinct, which is expected to provide as many as 35,000 jobs, saying it would support the MAC’s potential to become WA’s largest area of employment outside the Perth CBD.