Truck traffic overload feared
COTTESLOE ratepayers have warned that a proposed $2 billion sale of Fremantle Port could treble truck and container traffic through a redeveloped Scarborough.
“It’ll be a tripling if the port sale goes ahead and that’s what we’re saying is going to happen past apartments in Scarborough,” Cottesloe Residents and Ratepayers Association secretary Yvonne Hart said.
The port now has about 750,000 container movements annually but in 2014, a State Government workshop forecast that it could reach 90 per cent of a 2.1 million capacity by 2038, and a 2.6m capacity if the port became a single terminal.
In 2015, a Fremantle Port Authority survey found containers comprised 2 per cent, or about 300 trucks, of the 15,000 vehicles going through Cottesloe daily.
While some containers divert to Osborne Park, a remainder may use Scarborough to get to Reid Highway and northern deliveries.
“I don’t think people realise the volume of trucks that already go up West Coast Highway,” Mrs Hart said.
City of Stirling Mayor Giovanni Italiano was concerned about more trucks through the redeveloped beachfront.
“If it trebles, it’s going to be massive, but until then who knows what is happening with our transport system in the future?” he said.
Scarborough residents fighting more beachside parking and two new beach roads fear “rat running” on The Esplanade to avoid congestion, and say residents and developers are unaware of potential truck growth.
“It’s suspected a lot of the traffic changes in Scarborough is not for cars, but for the flow of trucks on West Coast Highway,” Beach Not Bitumen sustainable transport spokesman Anthony James said.
Mr James said solutions should cap parking, build light rail and highspeed buses, and develop better planning for trucks across Perth.
Transport Minster Bill Marmion’s spokesman said there was “absolutely no factual basis to the assumption” West Coast Highway traffic would rise “commensurately” with port container capacity because trucks had no benefit diverting north when the closest Swan River return crossing was the Narrows Bridge.
However, the spokesman said northern and southern trucks would grow “incrementally”, meaning the Perth Freight Link was needed to take 89 per cent of those port trucks using southern suburbs’ roads.