Thursday, June 13, 2024

Huge change coming to major Perth freeway

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A $288 million extension of Stephenson Avenue over the Mitchell Freeway is entering its most crucial stage, with two new bridges beginning its “launch”.

The bridges will be built as part of both the Stephenson Avenue Extension and Stirling Bus Interchange projects, with an innovative construction method set to “launch” the bridges from one side of the freeway to the other.

The construction method will allow commuter access to be maintained on the Mitchell Freeway and train services.

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The technique uses casting beds, where reinforced concrete bridge sections are poured and cured, before being launched into place over live traffic conditions.

Permanent and temporary piers have also been constructed on the freeway, with vehicles shifted on to a temporary alignment while the works take place.

“People driving along the Mitchell Freeway have probably noticed the significant amount of work happening along this section but these bridge launches will take things to the next level,” Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said.

“Over the next six months, people will see these bridges gradually emerging over the Mitchell Freeway but the construction method we’re using means that access for road users and train commuters will be maintained.

Camera IconAnimation still of bridge launch process. Credit: Main Roads

“This Stephenson Avenue Extension project is transformational for this part of our city and will make a big difference to the way people commute and get around.

“We are completely changing the way local residents and visitors will access this area, while creating more opportunity by opening up undeveloped land near the freeway and Stirling station.”

The Stephenson Avenue Extension project is now in its second and final phase, with more than 40 per cent complete, the entire bridge construction process expected to take about six months to complete.

Stephenson Avenue Extension in June 2024.
Camera IconStephenson Avenue Extension in June 2024. Credit: supplied

Phase two of the project will see Stephenson Avenue extended from Howe Street to the Mitchell Freeway including a new road connecting Sarich Court to Cedric Street on the west side of the freeway.

Completion will end in a new freeway interchange at the Stephenson Avenue overpass, meaning the Cedric Street interchange will be modified, removing the southbound on and off-ramps as well as removing the northbound off-ramp.

This will leave the Mitchell freeway without any Cedric Street exits and just the one northbound entry.

The $288m extension is in addition to the $174m cost of the Stirling Bus Interchange, creating 30 bus stands, up from 18.

Map of Stephenson Avenue Extension project.
Camera IconMap of Stephenson Avenue Extension project. Credit: Main Roads

Balcatta MLA David Michael said the extension would “enable a transformation towards the future Stirling City Centre”, while Scarborough MLA Stuart Aubrey said the project would ease congestion through the area, which he described as long being “a point of frustration for locals”.

“We’ll see new opportunities for housing development unlocked in a prime location alongside the Stirling bus interchange and train station,” Mr Aubrey said.

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