A Federal Labor Government will help eliminate Perth’s most-congested road intersection by funding construction of an overpass to separate the Leach Highway from Welshpool Road at Welshpool.
Every peak hour, congestion around the existing intersection creates queues of vehicles stretching as far as 1km. This holds up traffic headed to and from important industrial areas of O’Connor and Welshpool as well as the Kewdale Intermodal Freight Terminal, Perth Airport and the Port of Fremantle.
Separating the highway with an overpass will make a real difference to the Perth economy by lifting productivity and driving economic and jobs growth.
The project would also include an upgrade to the Leach Highway Bridge over rail south of the proposed Welshpool Interchange. Upgrading this bridge would ensure the southbound ramp and merge lane is not constrained, providing adequate long-term capacity on the Leach Highway.
Federal Labor would contribute half of the project funding, which has a current estimated cost of $93 million.
Construction is expected to create 385 direct and indirect jobs and work could begin as early as June, 2019.
Western Australia must broaden its economic base.
Governments must facilitate this process by investing in transformative infrastructure projects like the Welshpool Interchange to make it easier for businesses to get their goods to market.
The Leach Highway-Welshpool Road intersection is immediately south of the Gateway WA project, which was funded by the former Federal Labor Government and delivered benefits for the entire Western Australian state economy.
The former Labor Government also funded the Perth City Link, the Swan Valley Bypass (now known as NorthLink), the Tonkin and Leach Highway upgrades and work on the Great Northern Highway and the North-West Coastal Highway.
The next Federal Labor Government will build on this record.
As with the $700 million Labor has already committed to the extension of the rail line to Ellenbrook, the funding for the Leach Highway/Welshpool Road Intersection Upgrade will come from our $1.6 billion Fair Share for WA Fund, to be established in recognition of WA not receiving a fair share of GST receipts.
FRIDAY, 23 FEBRUARY, 2018