The Australian and Victorian Governments are ramping up works on the Barwon Heads Road Upgrade to make journeys safer and more reliable.
The new nine-metre-high bridge over rail at Marshall is taking shape with concrete supports including columns and walls completed in recent weeks in preparation for beam lifts next month.
More than 570 cubic metres of concrete has been used to construct the bridge’s foundations, columns and walls, and work to build the approach ramps and retaining walls for the bridge are underway.
The bridge is part of the $365 million Barwon Heads Road Upgrade, which is creating more than 570 direct jobs and generating a further 1419 indirect jobs over the course of the construction. Crews have clocked up close to 500,000 hours since early works began in July 2021.
Wall panels incorporating designs by the Wadawurrung Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation (WTOAC) will be a feature of the new bridge. The detailed pattern represents vertically broken boomerang flanks, and the colour reflects soils from the region.
The panels are one of the many structures on the project that will incorporate Wadawurrung design and art, with Major Roads Projects Victoria having worked with WTOAC on other project design elements, colours, and landscaping.
In late August, 18 steel beams measuring between 29m and 55m and weighing close to 750 tonnes in total will be lifted into place in a major works milestone. The manufacture of the beams, at local Corio supplier Thornton Engineering, began in January and is nearing completion.
The 97-metre-long bridge will allow for the removal of the level crossing at Marshall to increase safety and ease congestion along the busy road.
The Barwon Heads Upgrade project extends four kilometres from Settlement Road to Reserve Road and includes upgraded intersections and new traffic lights, new shared walking and cycling paths and dedicated road cycling lanes, as well as the level crossing removal and new bridge over the rail line.
Progress on the Barwon Heads Road Upgrade has made major strides, following 6 weeks of intensive construction works, with the upgraded intersection at Breakwater Road opening to vehicles on Saturday morning.
The project is funded by the Australian and Victorian Governments and is on track to be complete in late 2023.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan
“We are ensuring the road and rail network meets the needs of the growing community, through projects including the Barwon Heads Road upgrade, and the recently opened Waurn Ponds Station upgrade.”
“Geelong is experiencing the largest population growth in regional Victoria, with the Armstrong Creek urban growth area expected to provide up to 65,000 homes over the next 10 to 25 years alone.”
Quote attributable to Victorian Member for South Barwon Darren Cheeseman
“Significant progress on the Barwon Heads Road upgrade has been made in recent weeks as the project approaches half a million work hours, and we can’t wait to see the many benefits it brings to the community.”
Quotes attributable to Federal Member for Corangamite Libby Coker MP
“Geelong is not only a rapidly growing regional centre, but it is also the gateway to some of our most popular tourist destinations and is an important connection to Melbourne.”
“Tourism all around the Bellarine region is flowering, driving jobs growth, and this road is a vital piece of transport infrastructure to underpin that trend.”
Reviewed 13 July 2022