Buckingham Crescent will be the only entry and exit point to a 107-dwelling development near North Lake Senior Campus, with maximum daily vehicle movements predicted to increase more than four-fold, from 250 to 1130.
Traffic on nearby Winterfold Road is estimated to climb from 8700 vehicle movements per day to as many as 9580, despite a maximum desirable daily traffic volume of just 8000.
Pindan Capital’s proposal for Lot 4225 (No 23) Buckingham Crescent was lodged with the City of Melville as a development assessment panel (DAP) application and never considered by council.
The proposed estate was initially rejected by a joint development assessment panel (JDAP) on August 31 last year for failing to comply with a number of State and council policies, none of which related to increased traffic.
A revised application, containing 24 new conditions, was approved unanimously in front of more than 15 Kardinya residents at a second JDAP meeting on February 25.
Wayne Martinovich has been elected as spokesman for a 40-strong group of Kardinya residents that us determined to fight the decision. He said they could not understand why the development did not have direct access to North Lake Road.
“If you look at the section of North Lake Road from Garling Street to Leach Highway, there are six access roads, one that is less than 100m from the Leach Highway lights,” Mr Martinovich said. “There are no problems or safety risks and everyone gets in and out okay.
“Between South Street and Winterfold Road there are no access roads at all.”
He also raised concerns with the number of heavy vehicles that would use Buckingham Crescent during construction.
He said Melville councillors Nicole Foxton and Rebecca Aubrey, who sat on the JDAP panel, should have “gone in to bat” for residents.
Cr Foxton was the only councillor present at both JDAP meetings. She said City staff had considered traffic impact but determined it to be minor.
“The surrounding road network has the capacity to cater for any traffic increases brought about by the new development, therefore the traffic impact wasn’t a reason for (the original) refusal,” she said. “Not all vehicles going into or out of the site will use Winterfold Road.
“As the road is already operating above the maximum desirable daily traffic volume and is working effectively, I don’t think a minor increase in vehicle numbers will have an impact on functionality or safety.”
Melville Mayor Russell Aubrey said the Buckingham Crescent residents were the first victims of the failure to construct Roe 8 and 9.
“Main Roads refused to consider an entry to the new development on North Lake Road,” he said.
“If (the Roe Highway extension) had gone ahead according to plan, then tens of thousands of vehicles would have been taken off North Lake and Winterfold, meaning that an additional road accessing on to North Lake would not have been a problem.
“Cockburn would not need six lanes on Winterfold and residents would not have to put up with additional traffic.”
Residents rue lack of information
Some residents on Buckingham Crescent believe they were not adequately informed of the joint development assessment panel (JDAP) process.
Clive Newman said he only learnt that Pindan Capital had lodged a revised application one week before the February 25 JDAP meeting, when he received an email from councillor Nicole Foxton, one of two Melville councillors on the panel.
“To Councillor Foxton’s credit, she did continue to keep me informed of the initial rejection, the appeal and the date of the second JDAP meeting,” Mr Newman said.
“However, in her email on February 18 she told me to speak with City staff about residents’ traffic concerns before we requested to speak at the JDAP but at no point told us that any submission to do so had to be made a minimum of 72 hours before the meeting. I only heard back from the City two days before the meeting and so when it became clear they did not share the same concerns about traffic as the residents, there was not enough time left to lodge a submission.”