FEDERAL Opposition leader Bill Shorten has pledged $108 million to extend the Mitchell Freeway to Romeo Road if elected next year.
Mr Shorten visited the end of the freeway in Nowergup with State Transport Mininster Rita Saffioti, Butler MLA John Quigley and federal Labor candidate for Pearce Kim Travers this morning.
According to his statement, the freeway is one of Perth’s busiest roads used by up to 140,000 vehicles a day and could become the most congested corridor by the mid 2020s without additional capacity.
The pre-election promise would include construction of a 5.6km extension to Romeo Road, generating about 875 jobs.
It would form part of Labor’s $1.6 billion Fair Share for WA Fund that was announced to bring WA’s GST share up to the equivalent of a 70 cent floor.
“We recognise that WA hasn’t been getting its fair share,” Mr Shorten said.
UPDATE, 5.10pm: Ms Travers said it was valuable to have “good infrastructure to ease traffic congestion and keep the city moving”.
“It means less time commuting and more time at home with the family,” she said.
Butler MLA John Quigley said it would “go hand-in-hand with the Metronet extension to Yanchep and the duplication of Marmion Avenue to drastically reduce travel times” in his electorate.
Wanneroo Mayor Tracey Roberts said the City had been advocating for the extension for several years.
“Delivery of this desperately needed infrastructure will unlock the economic development potential for the region and connect residents in our most northern suburbs of Alkimos, Yanchep and Two Rocks to the greater Perth area,” she said.
“This Northern Coastal Growth Corridor alone is expected to welcome 85,000 more residents over the next 18 years, representing more than half (53 per cent) of the City’s total expected growth.”
Pearce MHR Christian Porter and Moore MHR Ian Goodenough have been running an online campaign to show community support for the freeway extension as part of a bid to secure federal funding.
Infrastructure Australia identified the project has a high priority within the next five years to address congestion.