THE State Government has announced its preferred proponent to carry out the multi-million dollar Ellenbrook Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project.
Transport Minister Bill Marmion announced this morning CBP would work with Main Roads WA, in partnership with the Public Transport Authority and the City of Swan, to deliver the $55 million project.
“The BRT will provide a vital transport link between Ellenbrook, its neighbouring communities and the Midland Train Line,” Mr Marmion said.
“This will deliver a streamlined, reliable bus service for commuters in Perth’s north eastern corridor, particularly the suburbs of Ellenbrook, Brabham and Dayton.
“Construction on the project will also generate around 100 jobs.”
Plans for an upgrade of the 9km stretch of Lord Street from Ellenbrook to Marshall Road were first touted in 2011, before being abandoned ahead of the 2013 State Election.
Earlier this year, Premier Colin Barnett announced the project – which is claimed would lead to shorter, more reliable bus journey times for those in Perth’s north-eastern corridor – had been resurrected.
“In addition to the bus transit way, two sections of single carriageway road, known as ‘New Lord Street’ would be constructed between Gnangara Road and Park Street,” Mr Marmion said.
“As well as a 2.8km stretch between Youle-Dean Road and Marshall Road.”
A further dual carriageway road will be constructed linking to Reid Highway, with modifications to adjacent roads along the route.
The project includes 9km of shared path between Ellenbrook Station and Marshall Road with cycling facilities planned at the new stations to improve accessibility.
Opposition spokeswoman and West Swan MLA Rita Saffioti, who today launched a new campaign to have Lord Street upgraded to four lanes the whole way, claimed the project would not fix Lord Street’s congestion.
“This project does not include an upgrading of Lord Street to four lanes all the way to Gnangara Road, but rather just to Youle-Dean Road,” she said.
“This will simply move congestion, not solve it.”
Ms Saffioti also questioned the cost of the project, which she said had grown from $49 million allocated in the State Budget, to $55 million.
“The massive congestion on Lord Street and surrounding roads is having a real impact on the lives of local residents,” she said.
“A full upgrade of Lord Street is what’s required; this must include a duplication of the road from Reid Highway to Gnangara Road.”
Swan Hills MLA Frank Alban said the BRT would make getting to and from Ellenbrook 10 minutes faster.
“The Bus Rapid Transit is the first of its kind,” he said.
“It will cut congestion on Lord Street as cars and buses will be separated.”
Construction on the project is due to begin within the next month, with the project estimated to be completed by early 2018.