Dual laneway needed for Capel to Busselton stretch

Vasse MLA Libby Mettam, Busselton resident Judy Davy and accommodation provider Johanna Hansen.
Vasse MLA Libby Mettam, Busselton resident Judy Davy and accommodation provider Johanna Hansen.

As holiday goers prepare to head south for a long weekend, locals brace for long delays along Bussell Highway.

A dual lane-way for the stretch between Capel and Busselton has long been called for by the community with several serious crashes occurring along the highway in recent years.

In a letter responding to Vasse MLA Libby Mettam, transport minister Rita Saffioti stated stage one from Capel to Hutton Road was ready for construction.

However, the minister did not respond to questions from the Mail about whether funds were allocated to prioritise the works or when they would commence.

Ms Saffioti said in the letter, stage one required the installation of preload that must be kept in place for at least one year before construction could commence.

The letter stated the design of stage two from Hutton Road to Busselton was nearing completion with plans to submit documents for environmental approval were in progress.

Collie-Preston MLA Mick Murray criticised Ms Mettam for her failure to secure federal government funding for the much needed project.

"The Federal Government has allocated $1.6 billion in road and rail funding around WA, but there is nothing for the much-needed Bussell Highway widening," he said.

"The Member for Vasse has again neglected her responsibility to the road users of the South West."

Ms Mettam said when she talked to residents it was the number one need in the region

"I would hope a state government commitment is now made, and also if there are funds left over from the Bunbury Outer Ring project that they look at extending those works to dual the carriageway which would be a logical extension."

A South West accommodation provider has echoed these sentiments and warned inaction over dualling the Bussell Highway between Capel and Busselton was deterring tourists from visiting the region.

Grangeview owner Johanna Hansen said they had guests who had not been to Busselton for some time and they could not believe the road from Bunbury to Busselton was still a single lane.

"It would make it safer and less stressful for people who commute each day for work," she said.

"The stretch of road is dangerous and poses a serious risk to locals and tourists due to its narrow lanes and lack of overtaking opportunities especially during long weekends and school holidays when traffic volume increases dramatically."

Almost 2000 people have signed an online petition started by Ms Mettam calling on the state government to commit funding to dual the carriageway.

If you would like to sign the petition visit petition.org.au/bussellhwy/.