An extension of Mitchell Freeway has been officially opened, with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull cutting the ribbon to the long-awaited road project.
The $236 million project will extend the freeway from Burns Beach Road to Hester Avenue in Clarkson, easing congestion for Perth’s northern suburbs residents.
Along with the future Metronet rail line to Yanchep, it will also accommodate housing and commercial opportunities in the high-growth northern corridor.
The extension also includes a new interchanges at Burns Beach, Neerabup Road and Hester Avenue, as well as an extension of Neerabup Road, duplication of Hester Avenue from Hidden Valley Retreat to Wanneroo Road.
It is both Federal and State Government funded, with an 80 per cent contribution from the Turnbull Government and 20 per cent by the McGowan Government.
While officially opened on Thursday, traffic will be delayed from using the new road until Friday.
Mr Turnbull said it was a crucial project for Perth’s northern suburbs.
“We are partnering in the big projects like the Mitchell Freeway extension, which coupled with the enterprise of Western Australians, will create new jobs, tackle congestion and grow the State’s economy,” he said.
“Less time in traffic allows motorists to spend more time with their families or more time at work. It means quicker, safer and cheaper commuting for individuals and businesses.”
Premier Mark McGowan said he understood the impact of road congestion to employment and family.
“Living down in Rockingham and commuting to the city every day, I know the pressure congestion can have on families,” he said.
“Less time commuting means more time spent at home with the family – and this can only be a good thing.”
He said travel times through the area were expected to decrease by about 60 per cent on average and it would help stimulate further investment in the north of Perth.
Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said the improvements are part of a comprehensive plan to address congestion and create jobs.
“Access to the growing outer northern suburbs will be further bolstered by the future Metronet rail like to Yanchep,” she said.