Improving traffic flow around Perth

Improving traffic flow around Perth

2The State Government has announced a $40 million package as part of the 2015-16 State Budget to continue to address the management of traffic across Perth’s road network to improve traffic flow and traveller information.


Transport Minister Dean Nalder said the Government was determined to provide a safe and efficient integrated transport system giving West Australians more choices to get to where they need to go.


“The $40 million package forms part of Main Roads’ wider traffic congestion management program.  Initiatives which are already being delivered include the review of traffic signal timings along key routes and enhanced traffic incident response management to improve travel reliability,” Mr Nalder said.


“We’ve chosen these initiatives because they can deliver immediate benefits at key hotspots to improve traffic flow.”


Treasurer Mike Nahan said relieving traffic congestion was a major part of improving economic activity in the city and a driver of State economic development.


“This will be money very well spent,” Dr Nahan said.


The initiatives are:

  • modifications at the intersection of Graham Farmer Freeway and East Parade
  • modifications along Marmion Avenue at the intersections of Hepburn and Whitfords avenues
  • modifications at the Tonkin Highway intersection with Kelvin Road in Maddington
  • enhancements to existing markings on all freeway on-ramps to improve  traffic merging
  • inclusion of an additional lane on Mitchell Freeway (northbound) between Cedric Street and Karrinyup Road off-ramps
  • installation of additional Variable Message Signs at key locations to provide improved travel information
  • expanding the hours of the Incident Response Service and increasing the geographical coverage.


       Fact File

  • The upgrade at East Parade includes additional lanes and turning pockets to reduce congestion and improve journey time reliability
  • Upgrades on Marmion Avenue and Tonkin Highway include increased lane lengths at turning pockets
  • The additional lane on Mitchell Freeway (northbound) between Cedric Street and Karrinyup Road off-ramps will reduce congestion caused by merging traffic
  • Incident Response Vehicles currently cover the Perth CBD, Northbridge Tunnel and  Kwinana and Mitchell freeways between Roe and Reid highway interchanges
  • Variable Message Signs are the traffic information signs along key travel routes 

    Perth is a growing city.  There are more vehicles on the network at peak times and people are traveling further than ever before.  There is therefore more demand on the network and growth in demand is expected to continue.


    There is no simple solution to tackling congestion.  However, by focusing on multiple measures, improvements will be noticeable in traffic flow and reliability. These measures are about smarter optimisation of the transport network and planning and prioritising investment decisions.


    They include factors such as:

    • expanding knowledge of traffic movement and demand to better prioritise investment
    • improving incident management  to ensure incidents are cleared quickly, with minimal  traffic disruption
    • addressing known hotspots for traffic congestion
    • optimising the use of the existing road network
    • improving the information provided to transport users and investing in infrastructure and education to promote individual behaviour change such as shifting from driving to cycling or public transport or encouraging carpooling.

    This strategy drives the State Government’s decision to invest $40 million to continue to improve traffic flow around Perth, which involves:

    • Better access to Graham Farmer Freeway from East Parade
      • Modifications at the intersection will address a known hotspot and improve long traffic queues. This will be achieved by providing additional traffic lanes and turning improvements.
    • Improved journey times and safety at key Marmion Avenue intersections
      • Modifications at the intersections of Hepburn and Whitfords avenues will address known hotspots. At Hepburn Avenue, an extra through-lane will be added on north and south bound approaches. At Whitfords Avenue, the single right-turn lanes will be converted into double right-turn lanes.
    • Increased capacity to improve traffic flow in Maddington
      • Modifications at the Tonkin Highway intersection with Kelvin Road in Maddington will address another congestion hotspot. This will be achieved by extending the right-turn lanes on the Tonkin Highway approaches.
    • Reduced conflict and improved traffic flow on freeway on-ramps
      • As a result of recent merge trials, Main Roads will roll out a program of revised line markings on all on-ramps to improve the merging of traffic and reduce conflict.  Drivers on the freeways have priority and other drivers in merging lanes need to give way to them.
    • Improved safety and increased traffic flow on Mitchell Freeway northbound.
      • Providing an extra lane on Mitchell Freeway between Cedric Street and Karrinyup Road off-ramps to address a known hotspot caused by merging traffic will result in increased traffic flow.
    • Improved immediate traveller information
      • Installation of additional Variable Message Signs at key locations will provide improved travel information, such as incident and diversion alerts, for road users.
    • Improved traffic flow as a result of enhanced incident management
      • Expanding the hours of the Incident Response Service and increasing the geographical coverage will reduce the response times to road incidents on the network.
    • Better understanding of arterial road network performance
      • Data currently exists for freeway performance however there is limited coverage on the rest of the Main Roads network.  A more informed understanding of the demand on arterial roads will enable better prioritisation and investment decision making.
    • Improved travel times as a result of traffic signal innovation
      • Rather than sitting at red light arrows overnight when there is little or no traffic, traffic lights will be changed to avoid this. A trial will start at 10 intersections along Canning Highway between Henley Street and Stock Road between 9pm and 6am.
    • CBD traffic lights
      • Introducing a flashing yellow signal at the traffic lights at the intersection of St Georges Terrace and William Street, Perth, to provide clearer messages to pedestrians and motorists.

    An integrated and optimised transport network will give the Western Australian community more choice and a better transport experience. Continually improving and investing in traffic flow and reliability is a key priority of the State Government

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