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Great Eastern Hwy clearing in the spotlight

A CLEARING impact plan for stage two of the Great Eastern Highway upgrade will be available at the Shire of Mundaring offices for viewing mid-January but it is unclear if the plan will go to public consultation.

The protection of vegetation affected by the upgrade project was the focus of a meeting with the Shire and Main Roads WA on November 30.

Mundaring Shire Council resolved to hold an urgent meeting with State Government members, Main Roads and Western Power to present its views on the clearing of vegetation and trees along stage two of the project at a special council meeting in the same month.

Notes from the meeting, provided by the Shire, said Main Roads had completed a “biological survey for the site” and noted “most trees within the site will not be affected but some clearing will be required to accommodate the widening and Western Power works”.

The Main Roads project design had been reviewed nine times to minimise clearing impacts while Western Power design had seven reviews.

Shire President John Daw said Council had been working closely with Main Roads to “ensure Council and the community are kept well informed of the project’s progress with particular emphasis on protecting vegetation where possible and replanting vegetation at cleared areas”.

“Council recognises the upgrade as being important to the safety of our community and all road users into the future and will continue to work closely with Main Roads to ensure community desire is balanced with infrastructure requirements of the project,” he said.

Replanting programs featuring local species are being developed in consultation with the Shire and will start in winter next year.

Stage two includes widening of Great Eastern Highway between Bilgoman Road and Kintore Road, new or extended turning pockets at intersections, new shared paths, upgraded bus stops, u-turn facilities, drainage, safety barriers and relocation of lighting and power.

Main Roads WA released a project update on their website on November 30 and are currently delivering newsletters to 4700 residential and business addresses in Glen Forrest, Hovea, Mahogany Creek, Parkerville and Mundaring.

By Claire Ottaviano

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