This rock shelter could be impacted by the bridge.

Lloyd St bridge future uncertain

The proposed bridge will be part of the Great Eastern Highway bypass and Abernethy Road interchange upgrades.
December 14, 2023
Andrew Williams

THE future of the Lloyd Street bridge remains uncertain while the state government continues to consider the next steps after consultation with community and stakeholder groups.

The proposed bridge will be part of the Great Eastern Highway bypass and Abernethy Road interchange upgrades and will span the Helena River with the aim of easing heavy vehicle congestion in the surrounding area.

A Main Roads spokesperson said it was working with the relevant stakeholders to secure state and commonwealth environmental approvals to recommence construction within a reasonable period, but the timing of approvals will ultimately be determined by the respective regulators.

This comes after claims the initial bridge proposal would impact culturally significant heritage sites to the Traditional Owners of the area.

This was in addition to widespread community concerns about the impact the bridge would have on the biodiversity of the Helena River in that area which resulted in halting the works, and reassessing with additional community consultation.

In a media statement released on June 23 last year by Transport Minister Rita Saffioti, discussions were underway between Main Roads, the City of Swan and Traditional Owners to explore the viability of a new alignment for the bridge.

The media release states a proposal was made to relocate the bridge further west to a narrower crossing of the Helen River, loosely following the old Whiteman Road bridge that was demolished in 2002.

A Main Roads spokesperson said a feasibility study, which included liaison with Traditional Owners, was undertaken to examine the practicality of the alternative alignment for the bridge.

The study concluded that the alternative alignment is technically feasible but carries additional cost and time implications.

Main Roads said the finding of the feasibility study and associated next step are being considered, but no clear date was given.

They said the repealing of the Aboriginal Cultural Heritage Act has had no effect on the timeline.

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