Group calls for bus lanes to Scarborough Beach

Stirling councillor Stephanie Proud and Christian Wetjen from The Bend in the Road community group. Photo: Martin Kennealey
Stirling councillor Stephanie Proud and Christian Wetjen from The Bend in the Road community group. Photo: Martin Kennealey

DEDICATED bus lanes could be a quick-fix solution to traffic and parking issues at Scarborough Beach.

Community group The Bend in the Road is advocating for a bus bypass lane north and south along Scarborough Beach Road, similar to what is in place on Beaufort Street.

Group member and Doubleview resident Christian Wetjen said buses often became caught in traffic near Scarborough.

“It’s actually quicker to get out and walk,” he said.

“What we’ve been told is that it’s a relatively simple and cost effective solution.”

Mr Wetjen said they wanted to make using public transport to access Scarborough Beach more attractive than driving.

Stirling councillor Stephanie Proud supported the initiative as a temporary fix while the City continued to work towards establishing light rail as part of the Stirling City Centre project.

Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said she was aware of “parking challenges” caused by the foreshore’s increased popularity and the State Government was investigating parking and access options.

It established the Scarborough Redevelopment Area Combined Agency Transport and Access group (Scarbs CATA) to examine current and future transport requirements.

“Work on the investigation started mid-2018 and is expected to be completed towards the end of 2019,” she said.

“However, recognising the current parking challenges, if solutions are identified early and they are practical to implement we will endeavour to trial them as soon as possible.”

Ms Saffioti noted there were incentives for developers within the Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority area to provide public parking.

Stirling Mayor Mark Irwin said the City was lobbying for rapid transit lanes to allow for light rail or trackless trams from Glendalough Station to the beach, and light rail would deliver “significant benefits above and beyond buses”.

“This environmentally friendly public transport system has the potential to significantly reduce reliance on private motor vehicle travel,” he said.

“In the meantime, there are a number of public transport options available to people who want to travel to Scarborough.”

Cr Irwin said high frequency public transport services was part of its strategy to deliver an integrated transport network by 2025.