Western Australia’s new four-lane Thomas Road Over Rail Bridge of the state government’s METRONET project has been completed and is now open.
The first two lanes of the bridge has been opened to the public since late 2022 and the remaining two lanes have been under construction throughout 2023 but is now open to the public.
The opening means two lanes are now flowing in both directions on the bridge, significantly improving traffic movements along the road, which was previously served by a single lane in both directions and regularly impacted by the closure of boom gates at the Thomas Road level crossing.
The delivery of the new bridge and removal of the Thomas Road level crossing marks the first major milestone on the METRONET Byford Rail Extension project, which includes the removal of seven level crossings, the delivery of two new train stations and the extension of the line to Byford.
Works on the Thomas Road Bridge included widening to four traffic lanes, connecting Butcher Road to Vlasich Road via a new underpass, building shared paths below and on the bridge for cyclists, pedestrians and horse riders, and revegetation and landscaping.
WA Transport Minister Rita Saffioti said: “The opening of the Thomas Road Over Rail Bridge is a significant milestone for the METRONET Byford Rail Extension and will make it easier and safer for commuters to cross the Armadale Line.
“These are the types of improvements people will see with the delivery of the METRONET Byford Rail Extension – with two brand new train stations being built, the extension of the Armadale Line to Byford, and importantly the removal of a further seven level crossings.
“We know how disruptive these level crossings are for the community and local businesses – which is why we’re committed to getting rid of them and at the same time delivering a significantly better train line that the serves more of the community,” said Saffioti.
The bridge also features paintings by local school children, which have been incorporated into the new footpath.
The project has also delivered successful employment outcomes with more than 28,000 hours of work undertaken by an Aboriginal-led workforce.
Darling Range MLA Hugh Jones said: “In the next six months, we will see works on the METRONET Byford Rail Extension ramping up, but the community is already seeing the benefits with all four lanes of the new Thomas Road Over Rail Bridge now open.
“This four-lane bridge is a significant upgrade on the existing two-lane road that was regularly impacted by the Thomas Road level crossing and passing trains.
“Our Government is committed to investing in important infrastructure in our community and we will see these types of upgrades continue with the delivery of the Byford Rail Extension,” said Jones.