Anger over children’s crossing nightmare

Anger over children’s crossing nightmare

Byford resident David Curtis is appalled at the lack of consultation in regards to a school crossing at the front of his house. Photograph - Aaron Van Rongen.

A Byford couple said they were appalled at the lack of consultation from the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale as well as other various government agencies after they woke to the sound of a concrete cutter tearing up the footpath two weeks ago. 

About 7am on January 16 David Curtis and his wife woke to the sound of the machinery ripping up a section of footpath along Warrington Road, which was fixed only two months prior due to tree root damage. 

Mr Curtis told The Examiner he immediately phoned the shire to investigate but was told there was no one in the department at the time who could talk to him. 

“I then had to leave for an appointment but about half an hour later my wife phoned me saying a bobcat was ripping out the concrete on our side of the road and the reticulation to the road reserve had all been destroyed,” he said. 

After several unanswered phone calls to the shire Mr Curtis said he was eventually told a pram ramp would be built in its place with the work completed two days later. 

Four days later Mr Curtis came home to find workers painting lines on the road only to be told the section of road was going to be a children’s crossing for Salvado Catholic College.

Mr Curtis said he was annoyed he and his wife had been treated like they didn’t matter.

“We have lived here for almost six years and thought this would be our final home to enjoy our retirement but I am seriously thinking about moving,” he said.

“We haven’t been consulted at all, will it be 20 kids a day crossing the road, 200 or even 2000?” 

Shire President Michelle Rich said the college had applied for a children’s crossing in May last year and an onsite meeting was held in July with representatives from WA Police, Main Roads WA, the shire, the college, the Department of Education and the Children’s Crossing Unit. 

“Three potential locations were discussed however the chosen site was the only one deemed a suitable distance from nearby intersections to meet safety requirements,” she said. 

“It was the safest most appropriate option and selected in consultation with road safety experts from WA Police, Main Roads and others.” 

Ms Rich said the property owner was permitted to erect a fence but development approval may be required for certain designs.