RESIDENTS are appealing to the State Government to prioritise pedestrian and cyclist safety at the Wanneroo Road-Joondalup Drive interchange.
Main Roads WA announced CPB Contractors, who were part of the Roe 8 Alliance and are working on the Wanneroo Road widening project, would build the $50 million flyover last month.
Tapping resident Barry McEloney said residents’ primary concerns related to pedestrian and cyclist safety, as well as restricted access to Drovers Place and businesses in that shopping precinct.
“This is going to affect a lot of old people in the (Regents Garden) retirement village (who) cross at the lights,” he said.
Wanneroo MLA Sabine Winton said the State Government took pedestrian safety seriously.
“Main Roads has conducted a safe systems assessment which confirmed pedestrian exposure to traffic is reduced significantly as there is no interaction with east-west traffic along Joondalup Drive and meets the National Road Safety requirements,” she said.
Mr McEloney sent 15 questions to Ms Winton in early July and said he was still waiting for responses.
“She acknowledged that she would obtain the answers for us from Main Roads and/or the Transport Minister,” he said.
Mr McEloney said he had received a letter from Transport Minister Rita Saffioti’s office last week but it dismissed residents’ concerns and did not include answers to his questions.
Ms Winton said there had been extensive consultation through information sessions, the community liaison group and meetings with groups and individuals.
She said the upgrade had been an election commitment and surrounding intersections had been included in the scope of works in response to community feedback.
“I have always seen this project as an opportunity to not only future proof the intersection but to look at this road network holistically,” she said.
Ms Winton said while the interchange caused concern to a few residents, it was “much needed infrastructure” and “about time we invest in future proofing our road networks”.
Mr McEloney said he had been part of the community liaison group but did not feel it had a fair representation of residents and there seemed to be a reluctance to hold community meetings.
“We attempted to get answers at the community forums but were pretty much fobbed off and told this is going ahead,” he said.
“This was an election promise in my opinion and others to compensate the Roe 8 contractors for the work lost after change of government.
“It now appears the same contractor for Roe 8 has been awarded the overpass contract.”
A response from the minister’s office in March said the Roe 8 renegotiation included the $31m Wanneroo Road widening, $100m Murdoch Drive connection to Kwinana Freeway and Roe Highway, and $145m Armadale Road upgrade.
A construction reference group is due to start meeting next month, replacing the community liaison group.