$60m pledge for new high­way

Western Suburbs Weekly - - State Election ‘17 - By JON BASSETT

THE western sub­urbs may have to deal with more traf­fic from a new pro­posed Stephen­son High­way that the La­bor Party yes­ter­day com­mit­ted $60 mil­lion to­wards.

“That’s a bridge they are go­ing to have to cross when it hap­pens, but we’ve all got our is­sues in coun­cil ar­eas,” City of Stir­ling Mayor Gio­vanni Ital­iano said when asked if the road would reignite pres­sure to build other parts of Stephen­son High­way.

The com­mit­ment pays for half of a $119 mil­lion, 1.4km ex­ten­sion of Stephen­son Av­enue, Woodlands through a marshy re­serve south­east of Ikea, In­naloo, and over the Mitchell Free­way.

Cr Ital­iano said the La­bor and Lib­eral par­ties had not replied to his letters seeking a com­mit­ment to the ex­ten­sion, claimed to cut Scarborough Beach Road traf­fic by 40 per cent.

Fears about re­main­ing Stephen­son High­way sec­tions be­com­ing a heavy north­east route were raised by Perth Freight Link (PFL) op­po­nents be­cause con­tainer traf­fic through Cottes­loe is ex­pected to treble to about 900 ve­hi­cles daily by 2030 if Fre­man­tle Port is pri­va­tised.

Cr Ital­iano said ex­tend­ing Stephen­son Av­enue was not in­tended to be part of any truck route but it would ser­vice the touted 40,000 jobs cre­ated by the planned Stir­ling City Cen­tre.

La­bor’s com­mit­ment de­pends on the City find­ing the re­main­ing $60 mil­lion from the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment and lo­cal busi­nesses, with work an­tic­i­pated to start in 2019-20.

La­bor leader Mark Mcgowan said the ex­ten­sion would “strate­gi­cally al­le­vi­ate con­ges­tion” on Scarborough Beach Road and ad­ja­cent routes that were at “break­ing point” near West­field In­naloo and Os­borne Park.

La­bor pro­poses to fund the ex­ten­sion by can­celling the PFL’S con­tro­ver­sial Roe 8, which it claims is backed by le­gal ad­vice say­ing scrap­ping the con­tracts can be done without sig­nif­i­cant penalty.

Three years ago, the State Gov­ern­ment re­jected a $300 mil­lion ver­sion of the Stephen­son ex­ten­sion, prompt­ing Stir­ling’s re­mod­elling and a new de­sign with no grade sep­a­ra­tion at its Scarborough Beach Road in­ter­sec­tion.

Premier Colin Bar­nett has said the ex­ten­sion could com­pete for funds from a $3 bil­lion wind­fall from his pro­posed $11b sale of Western Power.

The Lib­eral Party did not re­ply to ques­tions be­fore dead­line yes­ter­day.

Www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d464861

Mayor Gio­vanni Ital­iano on the land be­hind Ikea.

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