Murdoch link divides

COCKBURN council has welcomed a final decision on the Murdoch Activity Centre link this week, although the Greens say it won’t work.

On Monday transport minister Rita Saffioti announced she’d settled on a concept design for the link between Murdoch Drive and the Kwinana Freeway/Roe Highway.

Ms Saffioti said criticism of the initial plan had seen the final design refined, but acknowledged there were “still a couple of minor access issues that need to be resolved”.

Federal urban infrastructure minister Paul Fletcher says it will relieve congestion on Murdoch Drive, South Street and the freeway when completed in 2019.

“It will provide better access for workers, patients and students accessing the precinct, as well as visitors to patients of Fiona Stanley Hospital,” Mr Fletcher said.

• Stephen Cain: A compromise.

Concerns

But the Greens dispute this, with transport spokesperson Tim Clifford saying there’s been a lack of transparency behind the modelling.

“After fighting Roe 8…last year, the public deserves to be assured that this road includes contemporary traffic modelling and smart public transport options, and that the project developers have truly listened and acted on public concerns,” Mr Clifford said. He criticised the McGowan government for relying on approvals for Roe 8 to push through the connection, saying it was different in scope and location.

Cockburn council CEO Stephen Cain says the design will minimise the impact on local roads; Melville contends it will have the opposite effect in its suburbs.

“While it’s a compromise on what we would have preferred, as the city proposed an option for dual roundabout on Farrington Road, this option would have required more land from Murdoch University and placed the connecting road in close proximity to the conservation category wetland,” Mr Cain said.

He said Main Roads’ preferred option would have been bad news for residents and schools in the area, with a substantial increase in traffic and congestion.

by STEVE GRANT

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