ROAD CLOSURE A “KNEE-JERK REACTION”
CLOSING Nidjalla Loop at the intersection of Alfred Road in Swanbourne for two years would be a “knee-jerk reaction” to appease a small pressure group, says Nedlands Mayor Max Hipkins.
Nedlands Council went against the staff recommendation and approved Cr Leo McManus’s motion to close the road at its April 28 meeting.
Mr McManus said there was “almost complete agreement” among residents that nearby construction, including the Aria Swanbourne Apartments development, was “untenable”.
“The stress for residents is considerable and they deserve to live in peace and harmony with the local environment,” he said.
Technical services director Mark Goodlet said that, while there was “little justification for closing the road for traffic speed or volume reasons”, the prevention of through traffic to the subdivision would “add to its exclusivity and amenity”.
The City of Nedlands will accept submissions on closure until June 8.
However, Claremont resident Lindsay Youd said the consultation period was not long enough.
“Why is there a big panic and rush to do this?” Mr Youd said. “It does seem to be strange that this has been so quickly pushed through for the benefit of just 50 homes.
“The City’s study said they expect an extra 500 cars to be put onto Nidjalla Road going right by Swanbourne Primary School, which is already so congested. When I contacted the school last week, they didn’t even know about the closure plans.”
Mr Hipkins, who voted against the motion, said councillors had been swayed to make a decision that could be solved by upcoming minor traffic improvements.
The final decision is expected at the July council meeting, with the road closure due to start on August 3.