Eastern Link Project
Eastern Link - New Alternative Access Road to Busselton CBD
Latest News - EPA Referral Open to Consultation
The City Centre Eastern Link Project was referred to the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) for approval last year. The EPA undertook consultation in January 2018 and members of the public were invited to submit comments on the referral.
The City is waiting on advice from the EPA as to whether or not the project has been given environmental approved noting that this may take 6 - 8 weeks (potentially mid April).
The City of Busselton met with key stakeholders and immediately affected land owners on 28 and 30 November 2017 followed by a general community meeting on 5 December 2017.
The purpose of these meetings was to provide an update regarding development of the Eastern Link, the proposed design and construction of the road, and what the community can expect in terms of future traffic movement as a result of the construction of the Eastern Link. The City’s environmental consultants also provided detail on the environmental studies and approvals required for the construction of the Eastern Link, which are outlined below. All sessions were well attended and we thank everyone who participated for their ongoing queries and feedback.
The project comprises:
A new roundabout on Causeway Road, connecting to the Eastern Link;
A two-lane road formation along the old Public Transport Authority’s (PTA) rail alignment;
A new two lane bridge with a median and 1.5m wide sealed shoulders;
A new roundabout at the intersections of Eastern Link, Peel Terrace and Cammilleri Streets; and
Environmental Studies Approvals
A range of environmental studies have been undertaken for the Eastern Link:
- Reconnaissance Level Flora, Vegetation and Fauna Survey
- Detailed Level Flora and Vegetation Survey
- Baseline Assessment of Carter’s Freshwater Mussel
- Acid Sulfate Soil Investigation
- Aboriginal Heritage Survey
- Preliminary Waterway Assessment (Hydraulic Modelling)
- Construction Environmental Management Plan (under preparation)
Copies of the technical reports for these studies are available upon request. Please email: email@example.com
The studies have informed the design, construction planning and approvals for the Eastern Link. The City welcomes written submissions by interested parties to be considered in the design, construction and approval processes. Submissions are required no later than 20 December 2017.
Eastern Link will be referred to the Western Australian Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) under Part IV of the Environmental Protection Act 1986 (the EP Act). The referral will address potential impacts to environmental factors including flora, fauna, acid sulfate soils, hydrology (flooding), water quality, traffic, heritage and amenity. The EPA may decide to either assess or not assess the project:
- If the project is assessed then the EPA will prepare a report for consideration by the Minister for Environment in deciding on the approval and conditions for the project.
- If the project is not assessed by the EPA then a native vegetation clearing permit will be required from Department of Water and Environmental Regulation (DWER) under Part V of the EP Act.
Eastern Link will be referred to the Australian Department of the Environment and Energy (DEE) under the Commonwealth Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act). The referral will address potential impacts to Matters of National Environmental Significance under the EPBC Act, including habitat for Western Ringtail Possum, migratory waterbirds and the downstream Ramsar wetlands (Vasse-Wonnerup Estuary). The Australian Government may decide to either assess or not assess the project.
The EPA and EPBC Act referrals are proposed for submission in December 2017 and will be publicly advertised on the EPA and DEE websites as early as the end of January 2018.
Eastern Link has been referred to the State Heritage Office under the Heritage of Western Australia Act 1990 to the proximity of works to two State listed heritage buildings - the Old Butter Factory and St Mary’s Anglican Church. The office’s advice will be incorporated into the EPA referral.
The project will require the translocation of the threatened Carters Freshwater Mussel from the bridge construction area to a site upstream on the Vasse River. The translocation will require a Regulation 17 permit under the Wildlife Conservation Regulations 1970 and exemption from recreational bag limits for Fish Resources Management Act 1994.
No approval is required under the Aboriginal Heritage Act 1972 as survey indicates no Aboriginal heritage sites are present. However cultural monitoring will be engaged during construction to advise in the event of uncovering burials. The South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council was consulted regarding the Aboriginal heritage survey and appropriate Aboriginal representatives were involved in the survey process.
- Environmental referral mid- December 2017
- Relocation of services mid - January - May 2018;
- Construction of roundabout at Peel Terrace and Cammilleri Street Mid 2018;
- Construction of the new Bridge and road works to commence Mid -End 2018;
- Construction of new roundabout on Causeway Road 2018/19.
- Improve traffic flow
- Improve safety
- Improve pedestrian facilities
Note: The timing of these works will be reliant on the City obtaining the relevant Environmental Approvals.