Construction underway on Perth’s first ‘smart freeway’

BMD Constructions together with Ventia and Arup Group, as the SmartWays Alliance, have been awarded the $47 million Smart Freeways – Kwinana Northbound project in Perth.

The project is Perth’s first smart freeway to create an additional lane from Canning Highway to the Narrows Bridge. Smart technology will be used to open and close traffic lanes in the event of an incident and adjust speed limits to get more through traffic during busy periods.

A Smart Freeway is the best solution for this constrained area where the railway and the Swan River prevent traditional widening. It will provide motorists with greater journey reliability, saving time, reducing costs and enhancing safety.

Smart Freeways are used successfully around the world to manage congestion, improve safety and get the most out of existing infrastructure.

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We have completed the installation of barriers, amended line-marking and closed the emergency lane between Canning Highway and the Narrows Bridge in preparation for further construction works. For the safety of road users and workers, the speed limit has been reduced to 80 km/h during the day and 60 km/h during intermittent night works.

Temporary shared path closure and detours

To facilitate the next stage of construction activity, the following sections of shared path along Kwinana Freeway will be temporarily closed:

- Between Cale Street Footbridge and Hardy Street Footbridge from 18 February until mid-August with

detours in place via Melville Parade.

- The closure will extend north to the Narrows Bridge from mid-March until mid-June with

detours in place via Melville Parade and Mill Point Road.

Please note these dates are subject to change.

The temporary closure is required for the safety of cyclists, pedestrians, road users and our workforce.

The two detours have been planned to minimise disruption and allow time for works on and around the shared path. This includes lowering existing manhole covers to pavement level, resulting in a safer and smoother journey. Some minor realignment of the shared path is also required in several locations, to facilitate the installation of freeway gantries and installation of drainage and other works.

Please observe all warning signage and allow extra time for your journey.

Nightworks: Farrington Road to Canning Highway

From mid-February to July, intermittent nightworks are planned between Farrington Road and Canning Highway. The northbound emergency and left lanes may also be unavailable from 8pm to 5am and speed reductions may apply.

This project is being delivered by SmartWays Alliance, which includes Main Roads, BMD Constructions, Ventia, and Arup.

Scope of works

- All Lane Running: creation of an additional lane by transitioning the emergency stopping lane for use by general traffic between Canning Highway and Narrows Bridge.

- Lane Use Management System: safely enabling all lane running by implementing a smart system to close and reopen traffic lanes, adjust speed limits and provide emergency access during incidents, similar to the system used in the Northbridge Tunnel.

- Variable speed limits: are used to improve traffic flow by adjusting the speed limits based on traffic volumes and conditions.

- Emergency stopping bays: will be provided at regular intervals for vehicles to use in case of breakdown or incident.

- Coordinated Ramp Signals: will be installed at on-ramps to help balance the flow of traffic onto the freeway and improve merging at Farrington Road, South Street, Leach Highway and Cranford Avenue.

- Comprehensive CCTV coverage: will be linked to our central Road Network Operations Centre.

- Driver information: will be better facilitated through electronic message signs on the freeway informing motorists of traffic conditions ahead in real-time.


- Increase road capacity by 33 per cent

- Adjust speed limits based on traffic demands in congested periods

- Move more vehicles than ever before as well as reducing stop-start conditions by managing the flow of traffic

- Improved journey times on Kwinana Freeway as far south as Roe Highway.

Original article can be found here.


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