BEECHBORO and Bennett Springs residents and motorists travelling through will be aware of the big changes happening to the major roads in the area.
Eventually Beechboro Rd North will become a flyover by mid-2019 once the Reid Hwy and Tonkin Hwy intersection – part of the NorthLink WA project – becomes a freeway-to-freeway connection where vehicles will be travelling at high speeds without stopping.
A temporary roundabout to replace the traffic lights at the Reid Hwy and Beechboro Rd North intersection is on track and due to be operational from Sunday, April 8 following a full overnight closure of Reid Hwy between Tonkin Hwy and Altone Rd the night before.
Main Roads WA said the roundabout would improve traffic flow while allowing works to start for the new Beechboro Rd North flyover.
According to a Main Roads fact sheet available online provisions will be made for pedestrians and cyclists to safely cross at the roundabout.
A Main Roads WA spokeswoman said once completed the Reid Hwy and Tonkin Hwy interchange would have up to eight lanes merging-diverging together in very close proximity to the intersections of Marshall Rd, Beechboro Rd North and Benara Rd and to keep the previously operational intersections in place would present unacceptable safety risks.
The fact sheet said while access to Bennett Springs and Beechboro from Reid and Tonkin highways would change residents would benefit from faster travel on the road network every day.
The temporary roundabout at the Reid Hwy and Beechboro Rd North intersection should deliver slightly improved intersection performance over the current arrangement and remain in place until the flyover is completed in early 2019 thus avoiding continual change and disruption to motorists.
Construction of the roundabout has involved some night works, together with lane closures during off-peak times.
Main Roads WA said as part of project it would provide safer ways for people to walk and cycle while separated from traffic.
“Walking or cycling will be easier around Beechboro, Bennett Springs and to suburbs further away, like Ballajura, Noranda, Morley and Ellenbrook.
“Shared paths will be built on the Beechboro Rd and Marshall Rd overpasses.
“A path will extend through the Reid-Tonkin highway interchange and north to Ellenbrook, improving connections for local communities.
“An upgraded footbridge will be built between Beechboro and Noranda over Tonkin Hwy.’’
The landscaping and urban aesthetic treatments to be carried out in Bennett Springs and Beechboro include colourful native vegetation and wildflowers.
The fact sheet said more than 2 million trees will be planted and 800kg of seed spread along the roads.
By Anita McInnes