Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is Westport?
Westport is the State Government’s long-term program for a new, efficient and sustainable port in Kwinana with an integrated road and rail network. Westport is a once in a century opportunity to create a resilient supply chain that meets the needs of the community and underpins our State's long-term economic prosperity.
As major port projects take time to plan before construction can even begin, work is underway to develop a business case that will recommend to Government the high-level designs and best time and way to transition from the Inner Harbour in Fremantle to the Outer Harbour in Kwinana in the future.
2. Why was the Outer Harbour in Kwinana chosen?
In 2020, the Westport Independent Taskforce identified the Outer Harbour in Kwinana as the preferred location for the new terminal due to its pre-existing industrial area that already supports busy bulk freight and has the capacity for the new terminal, along with an integrated road and rail network.
It is also at the heart of WA’s future premier industrial area and will give those in the area greater access to skilled roles and training opportunities.
3. Where will the port be located?
The precise port footprint and freight corridor alignment is subject to further planning. Generally, the proposed location of the new terminal is between the existing Kwinana Bulk Jetty and the Alcoa Refinery Jetty. A freight corridor along Anketell-Thomas Roads will connect the port with Tonkin Highway.
4. When will the port be ready?
Westport is currently in Stage 3 “Business Case Definition”, which means planning is underway to determine when and how a new Kwinana port and logistics network should be developed. Westport will recommend the high-level designs and best time and way to transition from the Inner Harbour in Fremantle to the Outer Harbour in Kwinana.
The State Government will make an investment decision and determine next steps, including possible timing, after the Business Case is submitted.
5. Why can’t we expand the current port in Fremantle?
For over 120 years, the Inner Harbour in Fremantle has helped local and surrounding communities thrive and will continue to leave a legacy for future generations. However, urban development has placed pressure on freight access and in coming decades this is expected to constrain trade movements.
For the Inner Harbour in Fremantle to continue to move containers efficiently, major infrastructure upgrades would be required for the berths, terminals and channels. But even with significant upgrades, road congestion within residential areas would increase, slowing the movement of freight and therefore increasing costs and impacts to the surrounding community.
6. What will happen to Fremantle if the port moves?
With Westport investigating a new terminal in the Kwinana Outer Harbour, an opportunity exists to consider the long-term redevelopment opportunities for Fremantle’s North Quay.
A Future of Fremantle Planning Committee, administered by the WA Planning Commission, will develop a vision for the longer-term redevelopment of the area.
Transitioning container trade will be planned in advance to keep trade moving and ensure the businesses are prepared and ready for the move.
7. How will Westport manage the environment at Cockburn Sound?
Westport takes its environmental obligations very seriously, particularly in and around Cockburn Sound. Westport is taking a science-based approach to better understand potential impacts and opportunities so that eco-system health and resilience can successfully be protected for generations to come.
Westport has partnered with the Western Australian Marine Science Institution (WAMSI) to deliver a comprehensive research program that fills important knowledge gaps about Cockburn Sound’s ecosystem and marine life to inform a mitigation plan to offset any potential environmental impacts expected from the project.
The ultimate vision is to plan, build and operate the most sustainable port in Australia, targeting a carbon neutral supply chain.
8. Will I still be able to fish in Cockburn Sound?
Westport recognises the importance of Cockburn Sound to the community, including the recreational fishing community.
As part of our work with the Western Australian Marine Science Institution (WAMSI) Westport is engaging with the local recreational fishing community and researching ways to support healthy fish stocks and habitats.
9. What is happening along Anketell and Thomas Roads?
In August 2020, the State Government endorsed a new port in Kwinana, supported by a road freight corridor along Anketell and Thomas Roads.
Since then, Westport, together with Main Roads, has begun early planning on what the Anketell-Thomas Road freight corridor may look like.