Many people who walk or cycle through West Hawthorn will be aware of the very useful underpass at the Wallen Rd Bridge. This underpass provides a means of crossing under Wallen Rd rather than trying to cross this very busy road or detouring the considerable distance to the nearest traffic lights. It provides a pleasant off-road link between Morang Reserve and Wallen Rd Reserve, which in turn connects to Fairview Park.
For many years on the south side, access from the underpass to the Leonda car park was via a garden bed with rock edges and a concrete kerb. This made for a rough ride for those on wheels, whether on bikes or in prams, and was not ideal even for walkers.
The BUG raised this issue with Council as long ago as 2001. Our suggested solution then was a path through the garden bed to the Leonda car park and a simple pram ramp. A minor adjustment to parking spaces would also have been required. Various other solutions were discussed and rejected for different reasons.
Not in our wildest dreams did we anticipate the deluxe promenade now in place. The underpass now connects via a boardwalk with a smooth, wide shared path that skirts the reception centre, before crossing to Wallen Reserve via a stretch of red coloured pavement that clearly signals its presence to motorists. Cyclists and walkers now have a link that is both safe and comfortable to use.
The new path follows the fuchsia colored route. The route shown in red on the map is one of the earlier suggestions which was finally rejected.