Scarborough: potential truck traffic increase concerns mayor, community groups

Scarborough: potential truck traffic increase concerns mayor, community groups

A POTENTIAL “massive” increase in container trucks through Scarborough has Stirling Mayor Giovanni Italiano and community groups concerned.

“If it trebles it’s going to be massive, but until then who knows what is happening with our transport system in the future,” Cr Italiano told the Stirling Times.

Fremantle Port, which the State Government proposes to sell for a mooted $2 billion to combat a projected $41 billion State debt by 2020, currently handles about 750,000 container movements a year.

In 2014, a State Government infrastructure workshop forecast container capacity reaching 90 per cent of an anticipated 2.1 million maximum by 2038, and up to 2.6 million if Fremantle Port became a single terminal.

In 2015, a Fremantle Port Authority survey found container trucks were 2 per cent, or about 300 trucks among about 15,000 vehicles, using the coast through Cottesloe daily.

Some trucks divert to Osborne Park, but Malaga and northern suburbs deliveries go through Scarborough to get to Reid Highway.

“I don’t think people realise the volume of trucks that already go up West Coast Highway,” Cottesloe Residents and Ratepayers Association secretary Yvonne Hart said.

“It’ll be a tripling if the port sale goes ahead, and that’s what we’re saying is going to happen past apartments in Scarborough,” she said.

Scarborough residents fighting more beachside parking and two new beach roads fear “rat running” on The Esplanade to avoid congestion, and say apartment residents and developers are unaware of potential truck growth.

“It’s suspected a lot of the traffic changes in Scarborough is trying to ‘help’ is not for cars, but for the flow of trucks on West Coast Highway,” Beach Not Bitumen spokesman Anthony James said.

Mr James said solutions should include a cap on parking, building light rail and high-speed buses, and developing better planning for trucks across Perth.

Transport Minster Bill Marmion’s spokesman said there was “absolutely no factual basis to the assumption” coast truck traffic would rise “commensurately” with port container capacity because trucks did not benefit diverting north when the closest Swan River return crossing was the Narrows Bridge.

The spokesman said northern trucks would grow “incrementally”, and the Perth Freight Link was needed take 89 per cent of the port’s trucks using southern suburbs’ roads.

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