Bunbury Outer Ring Road Environment
Learn more about our environment plans for the Bunbury Outer Ring Road project.
For more information about our department's environmental policy, visit our Environment page. See the detailed plans below.
The project will be acquiring and managing land, in locations outside of the project area, to offset environmental values impacted by construction. Learn more in our Fact Sheet.
Environmental approvals have been granted for the northern and central sections. The southern section is currently being assessed by the Commonwealth and State environmental regulators. The process started in 2019 and involved sending referrals to both agencies for the two sections.
Commonwealth Assessment for Northern and Central Sections
In June 2019, we referred the northern and central sections to the Commonwealth Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment (DAWE) for a decision on the need for assessment under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC Act).
In accordance with Section 95A(3) of the EPBC Act, the Original Referral document and Preliminary Documentation for the proposed action was available for public comment from 28 May to 28 June, 2020 inclusive. No public submissions were received on the Preliminary Documentation.
In accordance with Section 95B(4) of the EPBC Act, a written statement noting that no comments were received, the original EPBC referral document and the Preliminary Documentation were made publicly available for information for 20 business days from 16 July, 2020. No submissions were received through the second stage of advertising.
On 22 December 2020, DAWE provided conditional environmental approval for the northern and central sections.
State Assessment for the Northern and Central Sections
In June 2019, we referred the northern and central sections to the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) for assessment under Part IV of the Environmental Protection Act. The EPA determined that BORR northern and central sections be assessed at the level of Referral Information with Additional Information.
The Additional Information for BORR northern and central section was released for community review and comment during March and April 2020. Main Roads then provided a response to the EPA for the community comments received during this period.
The EPA released its Report and Recommendations on 29 June 2020. The appeals period to the EPA Report and Recommendations closed on 13 July 2020 with a number of appeals received. We provided a response to the appeals, which was considered by the WA Appeals Convenor who provided advice to the Minister for the Environment.
On 14 December 2020, the EPA provided conditional environmental approval for the northern and central sections, subject to conditions. View Ministerial Statement 1155 for further information on the approval and conditions.
Two corridors were investigated as part of the southern alignment assessment. The investigation included the preparation of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) reports for each option:
- Southern Section GBRS Alignment Environmental Impact Assessment - PDF (36 MB)
- Southern Section Alternative Alignment Environmental Impact Assessment - PDF (41 MB) no longer progressing
An assessment of the two options resulted in the GBRS Alignment being selected as the preferred alignment:
Commonwealth Assessment for the Southern Section
In September 2019, we referred the southern section to DAWE for a decision on the need for assessment under the EPBC Act. DAWE determined that the southern section be formally assessed.
DAWE has since requested us to provide additional information (Preliminary Documentation) which was available for community review and comment over the period 16 November to 18 December 2020. During this time we received and referred on to DAWE, 83 submissions.
We will provide responses to the issues raised in the submission back to DAWE.
State Assessment for the Southern Section
In September 2019, we referred the southern section for consideration by the EPA as to the need for and level of assessment under the EP Act, 1986. The EPA determined that the southern section also be assessed at the level of referral information with additional information.
The Updated Referral and Additional Information document for the southern section was made available for community review and comment over the period 19 October to 14 December 2020. The EPA advised that they received a total of 998 submissions.
We have provided responses to the issues raised in the submissions back to the EPA. These responses will be considered by the EPA in their consideration of the project and in preparing their Report and Recommendations for the southern section
Commonwealth Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment decisions
The Commonwealth Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (DAWE) determined to assess the Northern and Central Section (EPBC 2019/8471), and the BORR Southern Section (EPBC 2019/8543) as ‘controlled actions’ and requested additional information.
Additional information for the northern and central sections was provided and made available for public comment for 20 business days during May and June 2020. On 22 December 2020, DAWE provided conditional environmental approval for the northern and central sections.
The additional information for the southern section was submitted to DAWE and made available for public review and comment between 16 November and 18 December 2020.
Environmental Protection Authority decisions
The Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) has determined to assess the two sections and has also requested further information.
The additional referral information for the Northern and Central Section was available for public comment for four weeks during March and April. The EPA Report and Recommendations document was released for public appeal on 29 June 2020, and the appeal period closed on 13 July 2020.
The additional information for the southern section was made available for public review and comment between 19 October and 14 December 2020.
On 14 December 2020, the EPA provided environmental approval for the northern and central sections, subject to conditions. View Ministerial Statement 1155 for further information on the approval and conditions.
Visit the EPA website if you would like to learn more about the assessment process.
We established two Community Reference Groups (CRGs) – one for the northern and central sections and one for the southern section. These groups were established during the development phase between mid-2018 and late-2019. These reference groups met a total of 11 times each during that period.
In addition to the CRGs, seven Community Information Sessions were held. These commenced in October 2018 with meetings in Australind, Eaton, Bunbury and Gelorup. Two were held in February 2019 in Bunbury and Australind. The last meeting was held in August 2019 in Gelorup.
The ‘drop in’ sessions provided an opportunity for interested community members to review project information, meet the project team and ask questions. The meetings were well attended. The key themes raised by community members were alignment selection, environmental impacts and local access/connections.
Further meetings were held with directly impacted landowners to discuss specific issues relating to the effects on their properties.
We also held a Local Access Strategy Workshop providing local residents who may be affected by the proposed Centenary Road interchange to have input into the local access options being considered.
View the presentations from the Community Reference Group meetings and further information on noise impacts and visual amenities below.
The South West Gateway Alliance is now engaging with stakeholders and the community on an ongoing basis, starting with a briefing to local businesses on procurement opportunities in November 2020. The community consultation program will ramp-up in early 2021 as the team continues to make contact with landowners and the wider community.
Proposed design update
The Environmental Protection Authority has consented to changes submitted by Main Roads on the design of the Southern Section of BORR to improve outcomes for the environment.
We welcome you to view the FAQ’s below, or visit the EPA website for more information.
The South West Gateway Alliance is currently planning additional community engagement to discuss the enhancements in greater detail.
What design changes have been approved by the EPA?
The EPA consented to changes to the project proposal under s43A. Main Roads submitted these changes to the EPA to address community concerns and further reduce the impact of the road on the community and environment. The changes include enhancements to the design and construction to address fauna habitat, fauna fragmentation, social connectivity, and social amenity, resulting in:
- a reduction of 4.5 ha of native vegetation clearing
- two additional fauna rope bridges
- two fauna land bridges
- lowering the road profile
- adding more screen walls
- a new pedestrian underpass
- adding walking trails in Gelorup to improve social connectivity
Has the EPA provided approval for construction to begin in the Southern Section?
The proposal for the Bunbury Outer Ring Road Southern Section is still under consideration by the EPA. It is expected that a decision will be handed down in the final quarter of 2021.
The next step is for the EPA to finalise the preparation of its Assessment Report.
Where can I view the proposed design changes?
Designs of the proposed changes are being developed and will be available at the BORR Community Hub and on the BORR website following the EPA decision, if applicable.
Where can I find the Responses to Submissions?
The EPA published the Responses to Submissions document (PDF) prepared by Main Roads on their website.
Will the EPA be asked to consider an alternative alignment for the Southern Section?
The only proposal submitted for formal assessment was the original southern section alignment, as reserved for a number of decades in the Greater Bunbury Region Scheme.
How do I receive updates on the EPA process?
What if I have a question that is not answered here?
If you have any enquiries, please call Main Roads on 138 138 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Southern Section EPBC Assessment
Documents (Referral Information and Preliminary Documentation) submitted for the EPBC assessment of the Southern Section are available for review via the following links.Referral Information
- BORR Southern Section Referral
- Appendix A - Figure 1
- Appendix A - Figure 2
- Appendix A - Figure 3
- Appendix A - Figure 4
- Appendix A - Figure 5
- Appendix A - Figure 6
- Appendix A - Figure 7
- Appendix A - Figure 8
- Appendix B - Stakeholder Consultation
- Appendix C - Biota 2019b - part 1
- Appendix C - Biota 2019b - part 2
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 1
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 2
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 3
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 4
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 5
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 6
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 7
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 8
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 9
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 10
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 11
- Appendix C - BORR IPT 2019a - part 12
- Appendix C - Main Roads WA (2018)
- Appendix C - WRM (2019)
- Appendix C - BORR Heritage Survey - part 1
- Appendix C - BORR Heritage Survey 2012
- Table 1-1 - Local Government Contact Details
- Southern Section Additional Information for Preliminary Documentation
- Appendix A - Figures
- Appendix B - Additional Information Request
- Appendix C - BORR Southern Section Vegetation and Flora Study
- Appendix D - Phytophthora Dieback Survey
- Appendix E - Targeted Fauna Assessment
- Appendix F - Aquatic Fauna Survey
- Appendix G - Review of Regional Claypan Occurrences
- Appendix H - Memorandum Targeted Rare Flora Survey for Diuris drummondii
- Appendix I - Risk Assessments
- Appendix J - Vegetation Monitoring Program
- Appendix K - Proposed Management, Risk Mitigation, Monitoring and Reporting matrices
- Appendix L - Black Cockatoo Action Management Plan
- Appendix M - Conservation Signigicant Fauna Environmental Management Plan
- Appendix N - Environmental Offset Strategy
- Appendix O - Stakeholder Consultation
- Appendix P - Aboriginal Heritage Inquiry
- Appendix Q - Archaeological Aboriginal Heritage Survey of the Bunbury Outer Ring Road Southern Section
- Appendix R - Report of an Ethnographic Survey of Bunbury Outer Ring Road Southern Section, Gelorup, Western Australia
- Appendix S - Bunbury Outer Ring Road Southern Section Traffic Noise Assessment
- Appendix T - BORR Southern Section Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment part 1
- Appendix T - BORR Southern Section Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment part 2
- Appendix T - BORR Southern Section Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment part 3
- Appendix T - BORR Southern Section Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment part 4
Documents submitted for the Environmental Protection Act assessment of the BORR southern section are accessible via the EPA website.
Northern and Central Sections EPBC Assessment
Documents submitted for the EPBC assessment of the BORR northern and central sections are available via the following links:
- Part 1 - Cover, Executive Summary and Table of Contents
- Part 2 - Introduction
- Part 3 - Descripton of the Envrionment and Matters of National Envrionmental Significance
- Part 4 - Avoidance and Mitigation Measures
- Part 5 - Offsets
- Part 6 - Economic and Social Impacts
- Part 7 - Ecologically Sustainable Development
- Part 8 - Environmental Record of the Person Proposing to Take the Action
- Part 9 - Other Approvals and Conditions
- Part 10 - Relevant Policies and Publications
- Part 11 - Information Sources
- Part 12 - References
- Part 13a - Appendix A Figures Part 1
- Part 13b - Appendix A Figures Part 2
- Part 13c - Appendix A Figures Part 3
- Part 14 - Appendix B Additional Information Request
- Part 15 - Appendix C Stakeholder Consultation
- Part 16a - Appendix D BORR Vegetation and Flora Study Part 1
- Part 16b - Appendix D BORR Vegetation and Flora Study Part 2
- Part 16c - Appendix D BORR Vegetation and Flora Study Part 3
- Part 17 - Appendix E BORR Targeted Fauna Assessment
- Part 18 - Appendix F Targeted Conservation Aquatic Fauna Survey
- Part 19 - Appendix G TEC Vegetation Monitoring Program
- Part 20 - Appendix H Conservation Significant Environmental Management Plan
- Part 21 - Appendix I Black Cockatoo Action Management Plan
- Part 22 - Appendix J Offset Strategy
- Part 23 - Appendix K Final Report of an Aboriginal Heritage Survey
- Part 24 - Appendix L ISO Environmental Management Systems Certificate of Confidence
- Part 25 - Appendix M Main Roads Environmental Policy
Northern and Central Sections EP Act Assessment Documents
Documents submitted for the Environmental Protection Act assessment of the BORR northern and central sections are accessible via the EPA website