Country Victorians will have unprecedented access to information about the condition of country roads, road works and upgrades as part of a massive overhaul of the way VicRoads manages the road network.
Minister for Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan joined VicRoads Chief Executive John Merritt today to announce a bold plan of action based on the feedback from 11,000 Victorians, 700 stakeholders and 30 councils.
From today, Victorians will be able to log on to a digital dashboard on the VicRoads website to track progress on road upgrades, pot-hole repairs and other maintenance efforts.
A new international star rating tool will be rolled out, starting with the 20 most dangerous country roads, that will help inform future safety investments and encourage people to drive to local road conditions.
Victorians have told VicRoads they want greater transparency about road conditions and the work VicRoads is doing, from roadside drainage to fixing pot-holes and providing safer overtaking opportunities.
The Country Roads, Your insights, Our Actions report also responds to the changing face of farming in Victoria, with a new harvest scheme and red tape removal giving oversized agricultural equipment greater access to the roads.
More than 850 kilometres of deteriorating roads in regional Victoria are now being rebuilt thanks to a $260 million maintenance boost from the Labor Government this year alone.
Work is ramping up in every region, from major highway duplications to improved signage and road safety treatments that will significantly reduce run off road or head-on crashes on major rural highways.
Other key initiatives to modernise the network include a new approach to prioritising road upgrades that considers economic benefits and regional priorities, as well as a review of road signage across the state.
The community feedback is also informing Transport for Victoria’s development of a regional roads strategy.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan
“We’ve doubled spending on road maintenance since coming to office and this massive overhaul of the way VicRoads does business will make sure country communities get the road work they need.”
“We’re investing more than ever before to modernise the state’s road network, keep people informed and keep people safe.”
Quotes attributable to VicRoads Chief Executive John Merritt
“Country Roads sums up what VicRoads heard and saw across country Victoria – it sets out a bold plan of action to rebuild our regional road network to support a new era of regional prosperity.”
“People have told us loud and clear: fix the roads that need fixing because they are our lifelines – and that is exactly what we’ll do.”