Swan River crossing capacity

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Swan River crossing capacity

Perth road network capacity
Perth, WA
Fast-growing cities
Efficient urban transport networks
Problem/Opportunity timeframe
Near term (0-5 years)
Proposed By
WA Government
Date added to the IPL
14 February 2019


The Fremantle Traffic Bridge is at the end of its useable life and is at risk of closure. Transport across the Swan River at Fremantle Harbour is currently provided by three bridges: the Stirling Bridge, the Fremantle Traffic Bridge and the Fremantle Rail Bridge (which lies to the west of the traffic bridge).

Main Roads Western Australia’s current assessment of the condition of the Fremantle Traffic Bridge is that without significant remedial maintenance, (which will not extend the service life of the structure) closure will be required in the near term. This is a result of continuing deterioration of critical timber components and scouring of the bridge supports.

Closure of the bridge, without replacement, would substantially increase demand pressure on the Stirling Bridge, which would worsen travel times, reduce the resilience of the road network and impact heavy freight road access to the port.

Freight and passenger rail connectivity is also constrained due to the shared Fremantle Rail Bridge, on which passenger services are given priority. As the volume of freight increases on rail and the demand for passenger services increases, the capacity conflict will impact on the timely and efficient provision of rail services. However, it is unclear when the rail bridge will reach capacity.

Proposed initiative

The initiative involves addressing the risk of closure for the Fremantle Traffic Bridge. This could be achieved by renewing or replacing the existing bridge, or developing and improving alternative crossings and routes.

Next steps

Proponent to identify initiatives and develop options (Stage 2 of Infrastructure Australia’s Assessment Framework).