Slate cafe con­cerned over road clo­sures

Ellenbrook Advocate - - FRONT PAGE - Kristie Lim

A FAM­ILY busi­ness in Ben­nett Springs will be “strug­gling to sur­vive” dur­ing a four-month pe­riod when the east end of Mar­shall Road will be closed to build an in­ter­sec­tion.

Slate Cafe, which is lo­cated on Dul­wich Street, re­lies on cus­tomers from pass­ing traf­fic on Mar­shall Road.

Main Roads WA has ap­pointed CPB Con­trac­tors Pty Ltd to con­struct the new Lord Street and Mar­shall Road in­ter­sec­tion.

At the April 11 coun­cil meet­ing, Swan coun­cil­lors ap­proved tem­porar­ily clos­ing Mar­shall Road be­tween Lord Street and Chel­tenham Street and Day­ton Boule­vard be­tween Lord Street and Arthur Street from May 1.

The mo­tion in­cluded sug­ges­tions from Coun­cil­lor Peter Lyn­don-James for CPB to pro­vide all rea­son­able as­sis­tance to the cafe be­fore April 19 by ad­ver­tis­ing that the cafe will re­main open.

Main Roads will also place ad­ver­tise­ments with al­ter­nate routes avail­able to ac­cess the cafe in lo­cal news­pa­pers in the com­ing weeks.

The de­ci­sion comes af­ter more than 4700 peo­ple signed the cafe’s pe­ti­tion against the road clo­sure.

Co-owner Quan Le said while he thanked Cr Lyn­don-James’ ef­forts, their so­cial me­dia cam­paign would be more ef­fec­tive.

“On a con­ser­va­tive level, half of my cus­tomers are from the east and half of them are from the west,” he said.

“Peo­ple still know that we will be open, with­out a doubt, but will they make an ef­fort... (to) see us due to the ex­tra long de­tour they will have to take as well as the grid­lock traf­fic at the round­about be­tween the old Lord Street and Mar­shall Road?”

Mr Le said his fam­ily was not con­sulted be­fore be­ing no­ti­fied of the clo­sure in Fe­bru­ary and they had tried to work with CPB, Main Roads and the City.

“The only step that we have avail­able for us would be cut­ting down the num­ber of staff we have at the mo­ment,” he said.

“It is like a bomb just dropped on us.”

Main Roads WA spokesman Dean Roberts said Main Roads met the cafe op­er­a­tors on April 4 and CPB met with them twice in or­der to re­it­er­ate its at­tempts to mit­i­gate im­pacts of the clo­sure.

A 16-week tem­po­rary clo­sure was the short­est time­frame in or­der to com­plete the in­ter­sec­tion.

Swan chief ex­ec­u­tive Mike Fo­ley said there was sig­nif­i­cant pub­lic con­sul­ta­tion, which in­cluded let­ters be­ing sent to 1416 res­i­dents and no­ti­fi­ca­tions in news­pa­pers, li­braries, the City’s web­site and ad­min build­ing.

The link to the pe­ti­tion is at­mu­ni­ 481741 Pic­ture: David Baylis

Cafe man­ager Tee­gan Ruther­ford (fore­ground) with copies of the pe­ti­tion and Alis­tair Nahi, from Slate Cafe.

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