Wednesday, 5 June 2019
The City of Bunbury will continue to advocate for Bunbury’s local tourism; business and economic sectors as plans for the southern section and northern interchange of the Bunbury Outer Ring Road were confirmed yesterday.
Transport Minister Rita Saffioti announced the Labor Government would proceed with the planned southern alignment through the existing road reserve as well as the northern intersection on Forrest Highway following recent consultation with the community.
Bunbury Mayor Gary Brennan remained very concerned about the northern intersection on Forrest Highway and the repercussions for Bunbury.
“We are very disappointed with the Ministers’ decision to keep the proposed northern intersection design between the Outer Ring Road and Forrest Highway,” he said.
“In February we met with the Minister and put together an alternative concept that we felt maintained the primacy of Forrest Highway into our city and this has not been achieved”.
“The northern alignment places Bunbury at a considerable disadvantage and traffic congestion concerns need to be balanced with the local tourism, business and economic implications for our city,” he said.
“City council are very disappointed with this outcome”.
“Should the current design be constructed it will act as a significant deterrent to south bound motorists wishing to visit Bunbury as the intersection is approximately 18 kilometres from Bunbury City centre”.
Yesterday’s announcement outlined a provision for the development of a signage and landscape strategy to promote Bunbury as a key destination.
This is an expected element of the current Outer Ring Road plans and the city will work with the state to maximise the outcomes of this commitment for Bunbury.
“Our goal all along has been to protect the primacy of Bunbury as a destination; this city is much more than just an industrial hub,” Mr Brennan said.
“Rather than being a bypass, we want the opportunity to showcase our great city to the large volume of people heading south on holidays and weekends away from the metropolitan area”.
Bunbury City Council will reconvene on Tuesday June 11 to discuss the city’s position further.
“We will be seeking support to secure a change of design to ensure the primacy of Forrest Highway as the northern entry to Bunbury”.
Plans are now subject to further project development and design before an alignment is referred to State and Federal environmental regulators. This process also offers the opportunity for further public comment.
To view the Main Roads proposal click here.