Mayor wants answers about rail line shutdown

Mayor wants answers about rail line shutdown

City of Gosnells Mayor Terresa Lynes is mystified a s to why the State Government failed to include Gosnells as part of the works program during the 18-month shutdown of the Armadale line. Photograph - Aaron Van Rongen.

The 18-month shutdown of the Armadale train line will see extensive works undertaken in Canning and Armadale, however the $2 billion dollar project skips Gosnells entirely.

Gosnells Mayor Terresa Lynes doesn’t know why Gosnells has seemingly been excluded, but she’s determined to find out.

The move to shutdown the train station came as an early-morning surprise to Cr Lynes.

“I got a phone call at 8.30am in the morning on Sunday from the managing director of METRONET Anthony Kannis, to let me know what was happening, so I’m appreciative of that but I had no idea.

“It’s always nice to be told ahead of things, it is a State Government issue but it does cross over into Local Government concerns so it would have been nice to know earlier.”

She said residents of Gosnells would bear the brunt of the shutdown, with no reward for their train pain.

“It seems we’re going to have a fair bit of inconvenience for our local residents and the wider community as well, so it’s disappointing nothing is happening in the City of Gosnells considering how much we’re going to be disadvantaged by not being able to catch trains.

“It would be nice if there was light at the end of the tunnel for our residents.

“It absolutely skips us, I’m not sure what I’m missing. I’m not sure.

“Maybe they don’t think the demand is there.”

The City’s own statistics disprove this theory, with one example being the in excess of 21,000 cars that go over the William Street level crossing next to the Beckenham station.

How does that not qualify for works?” Cr Lynes asked.

“They’re putting another line in there, so I’m not sure what that means for residents but it could be a case of up-down, up-down, disrupting the flow on both side of the tracks so that’s an issue as well.

“We’ve got three level crossings in the Gosnells town centre and elevated rail there would create some opportunities for a nicer amenity for the town centre.

“Also Kelvin Road, they could do something there because we’ve got high-density zoning in that area – If they don’t do it now, when are they going to do it?”

The failure of the State Government to include Gosnells in the planned upgrades also has the potential to kill off a major development in Beckenham, according to the Mayor.”

“We’re losing a rail service and not gaining any benefit.

“There was a developer – not that we’re doing anything for developers – but we’re trying to create high density around our train stations and there was a developer who wanted to put a multi-storey development near the Beckenham train station, a transit-oriented development.

“The idea was that those if the rail was lifted there, it could feed almost directly into a shopping centre so people could hop off, do their shopping and hop back on, so this could potentially stop that development from happening. Their design was suited to rail in the air and now that’s not happening,” the mayor said.

Cr Lynes confirmed she has a meeting with Transport Minister Rita Saffioti on Thursday morning.

For her part, Ms Saffioti said the State Government continues to explore options to improve transport networks in and around Gosnells.