Roe by stealth?

COCKBURN council’s planners have suggested room be left for a two-lane road linking Stock Road and Carrington Street through the Roe 9 corridor because of the impact of deleting the highway reservation.

On Thursday as the Herald was due at the printers, the council was due to debate a response to the WA Planning Commission’s proposed scheme amendment to delete the highway reservation and replace it with a mix of green reserves, housing and commercial development.

A report from Cockburn’s strategic planning coordinator David Reynolds warns the City will be left with a big hole in its budget trying to deal with the additional traffic created by deleting Roe 9, and criticised the WAPC for not doing adequate modelling.

“For decades the City has planned, invested and maintained its road network on the basis Roe Highway will ultimately be delivered,” Mr Reynold’s report said.

• The red line shows where Cockburn’s planners want a “local road”.

He said the deletion will mean more rat-runs through other streets, more trucks on local roads who’ll be crawling to get through and costing their owners money, more serious accidents, street trees having to be removed, more traffic noise and emissions.

“The City estimates the potential financial burden of undertaking the necessary road network upgrades, increased maintenance, and road renewal across the Long-Term Financial Plan window, could easily be in the vicinity of $50-100m.”

Mr Reynolds says those living adjacent to the corridor will notice the increase in traffic, “with many doubling before and after the change”.

One of the proposals to mitigate the impact is the two-lane “local road” between Carrington Street and Forrest Road near the little dog-leg at Blackwood Avenue that continues onto Stock Road.

“Of importance, there is very little vegetation contained within the affected land, the most significant being one large tuart tree…” his report notes, adding it could be preserved “via other means”.

The report also recommends more land near Dixon Reserve be set aside for parks and recreation so the council can progress plans to upgrade Wally Hagan Basketball Stadium to a regional facility, but it warns that the City might not accept management of regional parks.

It says some of the land set aside as parks and reserves is difficult to understand because of its lack of vegetation, including one block of land which contains a single tree and nothing but grass and weeds.

“It is extremely important therefore, that the community note (or be reminded) of the highly conceptual nature of the plan, and that in the absence of:

• any commitment by the State to ‘gift’ a greater area;

• the City purchasing additional open space (via cash-in-lieu or other means); or

establishing a Developer Contribution Scheme of some kind;

the size, location and use of the local open space shown [in the lands department’s concept plan} could significantly change via the subsequent local planning process,” Mr Reynold’s wrote.

The report recommends Main Roads rethink its plans to upgrade the intersection of Stock Road and Forrest Road to cater for more traffic, saying it could be done without having so much impact on the existing bushland.

The council’s technical officers also want to speak about the proposal at a public hearing, which will be up to the WAPC once submissions come in.


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