Construction to duplicate the Western Highway between Buangor and Ararat will restart in 2018, following the approval of a new planning amendment allowing works to proceed.
Minister for Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan today announced that a contractor will soon be appointed to get this vital safety project back up and running this month.
Work stopped on the site in February last year after the original Incorporated Document for construction of the 12.5-kilometre section of the project expired.
Work can now resume to duplicate the highway to two lanes in each direction, with additional turning lanes, a new bridge over the railway line, two new bridges over the Hopkins River and an interchange at Hillside Road.
The Western Highway is the main road link between Melbourne and Adelaide with more than 6500 drivers, including 1500 truck drivers, using the section of highway daily.
In the five years to December 2015, eight people lost their lives in crashes on the Western Highway and 54 people were seriously injured.
This significant safety overhaul will save lives and make transport and trade more efficient between Adelaide and Melbourne.
Construction of section 2b is expected to take about two years to complete.
The works are part of a $672 million Australian and Victorian government-funded project.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan
“We’re building a better Western Highway to support communities and the regional economy across Western Victoria.”
“Drivers are seeing the benefits of 55 kilometres the Western Highway that’s already been duplicated and we’re pleased to restart works on the section to Ararat.”
Quotes attributable to Member for Western Victoria Jaala Pulford
“The construction of the 12.5 kilometre section between Buangor and Ararat is the next step in delivering the safer, more efficient connection between Ballarat and Stawell that our local community needs.”
“Drivers on rural roads are four times more likely to die in an accident –that’s why we’re making the Western Highway safer.”