RESIDENTS want a dangerous North Fremantle intersection bringing trucks, commuters and beachgoers to western suburbs improved instead of a different Stirling Highway turn slated for upgrading in the Federal Budget tomorrow.
“I would rate the Tydeman Road-Stirling Highway crossing in North Fremantle as having a higher need than the one at High Street at the end of the highway because there haven’t been any truck rollovers there recently, and although it’s not great it functions quite well,” North Fremantle Community Association convenor Gerard MacGill said.
Yesterday, WA Liberal Senator Mathias Cormaan announced a $2.3 billion infrastructure deal for WA that shifted $1.2 billion from the failed Perth Freight Link (PFL) to other projects.
The suite of funded construction includes a potential $118 million upgrade of the sharp Stirling Highway-High Street intersection in East Fremantle starting in 2018-19.
Upgrade plans for the intersection south of Stirling Bridge pre-existed the two-year controversy over the PFL.
However, Mr MacGill said WA Transport Minister Rita Saffioti needed to tackle the Tydeman Road intersection first, where at least four trucks had rolled in recent years.
“If she isn’t familiar with it, she should be made sharply aware soon,” he said.
He said Fremantle council had to lobby the State Government because Tydeman Road would continue to be a long-term route for port traffic even if a second port was built.
Last month, Fremantle Mayor Brad Pettit floated the idea of doing a cheaper “$30 million to $40 million” version of the High Street intersection.
This morning, he mooted using part of the $118 million to improve the Tydeman Road intersection and parts of Leach Highway.
“We don’t need a ‘Rolls Royce’ version’ and I would be looking to reallocating part of it to other parts of the port route,” Dr Pettitt said.
In addition to improving the intersections, a cheaper plan could also release funds for safe carparking at Leach Highway netball courts.
Dr Pettitt is expected to meet Ms Saffioti to discuss the intersections in coming weeks.