IT wasn’t enough get him onto council, but Success resident Tarun Dewan isn’t giving up his fight to get an Atwell to Success footbridge bumped up on Cockburn’s list of priorities.
“It was the big issue in my campaign, and 100 per cent of all the people I contacted wanted it,” Mr Dewan told the Herald this week.
“If I don’t follow through on it, I feel like I would be letting down all of those people.”
Peak hour traffic
Mr Dewan credits the footbridge issue with playing a major role in almost doubling his vote from 917 in the 2017 general council elections to 1802 at last month’s by-election.
The footbridge is on Cockburn’s list of capital works, but isn’t slated for construction until somewhere between 2022 and 2025 and Mr Dewan says that’s not soon enough.
He says the footbridge would make Gateway shopping centre and the council’s new Arc recreation centre accessible by foot or bike for Atwell residents, which could help relieve some of the peak hour traffic nightmares plaguing Beeliar Drive.
It’s also ridiculous, he says, that students living on Wentworth Parade in Success can practically throw a frisbee to Atwell College, yet are forced into a 10-minute car ride to get there.
“Steve Portelli fought for this for 8–10 years, so I also owe it to him to fight for it as well,” says Mr Dewan of the former councillor whose death led to the by-election.
“We talk about connectivity and healthier living, but what are we really doing about it as a council.”
Mr Dewan created a change.org petition to support his cause which has 261 signatories, plus another 100 or so on a hard copy, which was recently presented to the council by deputy mayor Lee-Anne Smith.
Mr Dewan also points to the council’s last community satisfaction survey which showed some dissatisfaction with the council’s footpaths and bike paths.
by STEVE GRANT