Bid for better bridge deal
ARCHITECT Neil Cownie wants to use newly linked ends of the old Congdon Street railway bridge for cyclists and walkers if a proposed replacement is built in Swanbourne in 2020.
“The key is keeping the heritage north and south ends of the old bridge and replacing the mid-section with a lighter crossing for pedestrians and cyclists, with any new bridge for vehicles behind it,” Mr Cownie said.
Main Roads WA is seeking the public’s preferred alignment from four unbudgeted designs to replace the 108-year-old wooden bridge its staff claims is “rotten”.
However, residents’ concerns about more traffic on streets, keeping the Swanbourne village atmosphere and not disrupting shops were sparked at an often argumentative public meeting at Claremont Football Club on October 23.
Other issues included the role the new bridge could have in the possible extension of West Coast Highway into Cottesloe and why it was designed for 19m articulated trucks.
Mr Cownie said Main Roads had to say what type of vehicles the new bridge was to carry and a less heavily engineered bridge could be built if traffic was kept to 30km/h.
He said a much-needed master plan could consider the bridge’s role in connect- ing Swanbourne, Cottesloe and Claremont, maintaining the adjacent shops and offices, and how it worked with a replacement Eric Street bridge in Cottesloe in 2022.
A Main Roads spokeswoman said they would support councils completing master plans for the new bridge’s alignment.
Local traffic issues raised during initial community consultation could be studied after confirmation of a preferred alignment.
She said the 19m vehicle was used for the options because those semi-trailers had unrestricted access to all WA roads and the new bridge had no eventual role in any wider plans.
Judy Welch, Ann Black, Rita Sillitoe and Lorraine Meeks with some crocheted poppies for the ceremony. Picture: Andrew Ritchie