Indian Ocean Dr planning study underway

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Main Roads WA is holding community information sessions next week as part of a planning study into the future requirements of Indian Ocean Dr between Yanchep and Lancelin. Picture: Anita McInnes

A PLANNING study to determine the future requirements for Indian Ocean Dr between Breakwater Dr in Yanchep and Seaview Dr in Lancelin is underway with community information sessions to be held next week.

Main Roads WA said based on projected land-use changes and traffic growth a dual carriageway was likely to be required in the future.

An April update on the Indian Ocean Dr planning study said there were 18 intersections along the route which would require upgrading or modification to improve safety as traffic volumes grew.

Based on analysis and consultation to date, Main Roads has identified the following intersections for consideration – Military Rd, Wilbinga Rd, Barragoon Rd, King Dr, Croot Pl, Gingin Brook Rd, Caraban Rd, Glenrowan Rd, Sovereign Hill Dr, Guilderton Rd, Tuart Rise, Seabird Rd, Greenwood Coast Rd, Bennies Rd, Ledge Point Rd, K.W. Rd, Lancelin Rd and Seaview Dr.

The update said direct access to properties also needed to be investigated but the proposed treatment was to consolidate accesses where feasible.

Some of the key points raised so far after discussions with key stakeholders include consideration of:

Potential future residential, industrial, agricultural and tourism developments;

Environmental constraints;

Emergency access and egress (bushfire, traffic incidents etc);

Dark sky and astro-tourism surrounding the Gravity Discovery Centre and Observatory in Yeal;

Road safety initiatives;

Access requirements, and future intersection designs along Indian Ocean Dr); and

Ag-lime routes and heavy vehicle access requirements.

Main Roads WA said it was important to note no funding was currently available for any construction works or land acquisition and the process was a planning study only.

The study complemented the recently completed safety upgrades and would assess future demand for the road including potential land development, access requirements and traffic numbers.

“Once the ultimate road requirement and location is agreed, we will identify and protect a nominal road reserve boundary,’’ the update said.

“This will help provide certainty for landholders.

“While these road upgrades will have some impact on adjoining and nearby land and communities, we will minimise this as much as possible by working collaboratively with landowners.

“Direct lot accesses and local road connections introduce potential conflict points for traffic on the road network.

“To optimise safety and efficiency on the network, we need to minimise the number of connection points, while allowing for appropriate levels of lot and network access.”

Main Roads WA spokesman Dean Roberts said in the five years to December 31, 2020 there were 97 crashes on Indian Ocean Dr, between Seaview Dr and Breakwater Dr.

In November 2019 before the start of the coronavirus pandemic and the loss of international tourists the McGowan Government had started a trial warning drivers to stay on the left.

The trial includes signs with symbolic ‘keep left’ arrows, and ‘keep left’ spelt in German, French and simplified Mandarin as well as directional arrows painted intermittently on the road surface.

When announcing the trial Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said analysis of crash data from 2014 to 2018 showed international drivers were 35 per cent more likely to be involved in head-on crashes, particularly drivers with a licence issued from a country that drives on the right-hand side of the road.

Main Roads WA statistics show 51 drivers were either killed or seriously injured on Indian Ocean Dr during that period with four international drivers involved.

In April 2018 construction of new passing lanes and other safety improvements on Indian Ocean Dr were started following a government-initiated safety review in 2017 in response to a series of serious and fatal crashes between Lancelin and Two Rocks.

There will be an Indian Ocean Dr planning study community information session on Tuesday, June 1 at the Guilderton Community Hall, Wedge St, Guilderton from 3pm to 7pm.

On Wednesday, June 2 an Indian Ocean Dr planning study community information session will be held at the Wangaree Community Centre, 131 Gingin Rd, Lancelin  from 2pm to 6pm.

For more information visit  www.mainroads.wa.gov.au/projects-initiatives/ (click ‘regional projects’ and then ‘future’).