Councillors for the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale have unanimously agreed to give the official thumbs up to the new Byford train station precinct plans.
But they did add a few caveats along with their approval.
Central to the conditions set by the council was the need for all roads within the new precinct to be tree-lined, with shaded footpaths, and a new roundabout at the intersection of Evans Way and the new Clara Street West and Sansimeon Boulevard.
The conditions also dictated that all intersections should include a variety of road design devices to moderate driver speed and promote pedestrian safety.
These elements included raised intersection plateaus, cobbled stones, and bollards.
The greatest concern overall was that plans were light on specific detail.
Plans for the main plaza which will form the entry to the station were particularly vague.
“Officers for a long period of time, have advocated for this area to reflect the community needs and aspirations for a positive outdoor, in what is the fastest growing community in Western Australia,” the report to council read.
“As such, the plaza needs to comprise a high-quality landscape and civic realm, which attracts families and visitors alike.”
Shire officers noted that artist impressions had been drawn up for other station plazas and public spaces, but that Byford was yet to see a visual diagram “to reassure the community that this space will reflect the commitments … for a high-quality welcoming place”.
So, council-imposed conditions that detailed plans be submitted and approved by the shire before any building work starts.
One of the biggest concerns for the community is the loss of the level crossing at Larsen Rd, cutting off direct access to Marri Grove Primary School over the rail lines.
The shire said it had been strongly advocating for an elevated station and grade separation (either road over rail or rail over road).
“Officers noted a number of times throughout the project that a grade separated solution would have enabled greater community connectivity, such as via Larsen Rd remaining connected,” the report to council said.
Regardless, councillors voted in favour of Metronet’s current plans which will go ahead with removing the Larsen Rd level crossing. An over-rail pedestrian crossing was proposed by Metronet, but the council is yet to see the plans. Councillors imposed a condition that the plans for the pedestrian crossing be submitted to the shire and approved before building begins.
Further conditions were added covering a range of issues, including accessibility and a Noise Management Plan.
The council’s recommendation will now be sent to the Western Australian Planning Commission where Metronet’s development application will be decided on.