As the year has commenced, it is evident that the roads are continuing to cause a problem for parents who are dropping off and collecting their children from the College.
The situation this year has further deteriorated with the closure of the access to West Swan Road near Milhouse Road while the bridge there is being rebuilt. This has resulted in a marked increase in traffic using Great Northern Highway, further compounding the problem as traffic makes its way past the College. This makes it even more difficult for cars to enter the highway and we are advised it will be the situation for at least 12 weeks.
A meeting hosted by Main Roads last year, including surrounding landowners and shire officials, determined that we could look at solutions in short, medium and long-term perspectives. Medium and long-term solutions will require substantial changes to the highway and will need considerable budget commitments from the Government, the College and surrounding businesses and thus, necessitates forward planning by all parties. There are also a number of conditions around how government funding can be allocated inside the College and roads are not considered a priority.
The College commenced planning last year to trial sending traffic in a one-way direction through the College; entering at the southern end and exiting at the northern end. This was considered in the meeting and planning commenced. While we can not be certain it will improve things in the College, the feeling is that it is worth a try. We are working towards implementation of a trial as soon as we have worked through the following Main Roads requirements:
- An implementation and operational plan developed by traffic consultants.
- Approval of the plan by Main Roads.
- Any physical changes necessary for implementation.
The formal planning with Main Roads is necessary because we are modifying the use of the highway slip lane at the northern entrance. I will keep you informed of developments as we proceed.
There is a follow-up meeting of major stakeholders planned for next week with the Minister for Transport that I hope will provide further clarity.
In conclusion, I would like to thank all of you who so graciously accommodate and show care for our children and for each other in our car parks and driveways in the morning. The support we get from the public letting traffic enter the lanes during peak times is also much appreciated.
I will continue to keep you further informed at appropriate intervals.
Mr Adrian Scott