McGowan visits new bus bay works on Old Coast Road

A number of new bus bays are being constructed along a busy section of Old Coast Road between Halls Head and Dawesville to improve accessibility and safety.

Work on the bays, between Peelwood Parade and Country Club Drive, began this month and will be finished before the end of the year.

The upgrades, which will support local jobs, are part of the Public Transport Authority's Bus Stop Accessibility Works Program.

The program upgrades about 700 bus stops and bays a year to comply with the Disability Standards for Accessible Public Transport.

Premier Mark McGowan, who visited one of the sites on Friday, said the works will support local jobs and improve safety for bus patrons and general traffic.

"There are 24 people employed through these upgrades and we are very much focused on hiring local subcontractors," he said.

"The first nine bays are underway out of a total of 18 and we expect there to be more in the future.

"It is not a huge project but it is terrific for people who live around here who might be older and need easier access or might have a disability."

When lobbying for safer bus stops on Old Coast Road in 2018, Wannanup resident Jill Fields told Dawesville MP Zak Kirkup she was worried about slipping. Photo: Supplied.

When lobbying for safer bus stops on Old Coast Road in 2018, Wannanup resident Jill Fields told Dawesville MP Zak Kirkup she was worried about slipping. Photo: Supplied.

After years of fighting for upgrades to bus stops along Old Coast Road, Dawesville MP Zak Kirkup said he's pleased to see it's finally happening.

"We have been advocating since 2018 for safety and accessibility improvements and now works are starting this month to get the job done," he said.

"I know this is going to have a significant impact on our community, especially people like Mrs Fields, who two years ago when we had our photo taken, was worried about slipping just trying to catch the bus."

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Future road upgrades and community projects can also be expected with the federal government announcing local councils would share in $1.8 billion to help those battling the impact of coronavirus.

The federal government has brought forward $1.3 billion from its annual grants to local governments from next financial year.

A further $500 million has been injected into a new program for roads and other infrastructure upgrades.

Mr McGowan said he was thankful the federal government brought forward these payments.

"Our councils in WA will get a cut of that and we are very pleased the Commonwealth has done that," he said.

"We are working cooperatively on other projects with the Commonwealth to get more capital works money out as quickly as possible.

"This is to keep the economy ticking over while we recover from the pandemic."