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Big Build Powers Ahead Over Summer

05 December 2022

Victoria’s Big Build will heat up over summer, with maintenance on the West Gate Bridge as well as major works on the City Loop and Metro Tunnel as crews continue to transform the state’s road and rail network.

Annual West Gate Bridge maintenance will take place between Monday, 26 December 2022 and Wednesday, 4 January 2023, closing four outbound lanes with only one outbound lane open to traffic. Delays of more than 90 minutes are expected and drivers are urged to find an early detour.

Significant delays are expected across Melbourne including on the West Gate Freeway between the city and the West Gate Bridge, as well as the Domain Tunnel, Monash Freeway and throughout the CBD.

From 9pm on Monday, 2 January 2023 through to the last service on Sunday, 15 January 2023, crews will work around-the-clock in the City Loop to upgrade smoke detection, extraction and sprinkler systems at Flagstaff, Melbourne Central and Parliament stations. This work is being undertaken while the network has the lowest expected patronage.

Flagstaff, Melbourne Central and Parliament stations will be closed, and no trains will run through the City Loop throughout the works. Southern Cross and Flinders Street stations will remain open, with trains running to and from these stations.

The works on the City Loop will help better manage potential emergency situations in the underground rail system, including allowing crews to respond quicker to intruders – further minimising and reducing delays to the network.

Commuters who usually get off the train in the City Loop are encouraged to complete their journeys from Flinders Street or Southern Cross stations by walking or tram. To allow the works to be safely carried out, buses will replace trains on part of the Hurstbridge, Alamein and Sandringham Lines.

Buses will replace trains on sections of the Cranbourne, Pakenham, Frankston, Stony Point and Sandringham Lines from Wednesday, 4 January 2023, as crews prepare the tracks for when the Metro Tunnel opens in 2025 – enabling trains to travel through Caulfield Station every two to three minutes.

A final construction blitz to remove two dangerous and congested level crossings at Union and Mont Albert roads in Surrey Hills also kicks off this summer, as crews begin excavating the 1.3 kilometre rail trench and building the new Union Road Station. Buses will replace trains on sections of the Lilydale and Belgrave lines from Friday, 17 February 2023 to late May.

Work is powering ahead on St Kilda Road to realign the existing tram tracks to join with the new tram stop at Anzac Station ahead of the tram stop reopening and trams returning 19 December 2022.

There will also be intermittent traffic lane closures as construction continues on new bike lanes on St Kilda Road to improve safety for all road users are safe.

With the Tunnel Boring Machines surging past the halfway mark on the West Gate Tunnel, works will get underway on Footscray Road, Wurundjeri Way and the West Gate Freeway at Williamstown Road in January and February to widen the West Gate Freeway and build new connections to the CBD and CityLink.

The closure of Dynon Road from Dryburgh Street to the inbound exit ramp from CityLink continues until Wednesday, 21 December 2022, with motorists warned of minor delays as work takes place on the Dynon Road Bridge.

Major road upgrades will also cause lane closures around Craigieburn Road, Hall Road and Narre-Warren Cranbourne Road. The Monash Freeway will be closed in both directions at Warrigal Road for overnight works for four nights in January. The Princes Freeway will close overnight between the Princes Highway and Beaconsfield Interchange between 9 and 24 January 2023. Detours will be in place via Princes Highway and Princes Link Highway.

Intermittent road disruptions for North East Link will also continue over summer, as construction of the Bulleen Park and Ride moves towards buses operating through the facility in 2023.

Whether driving, using public transport or cycling, Victorians are asked to allow extra time and plan their journey by checking the PTV or VicTraffic apps before they travel.

For more information about planned disruptions over coming months visit bigbuild.vic.gov.au

Quotes attributable to Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Jacinta Allan

“It’s our biggest summer of Victoria’s Big Build with more than 19,000 jobs on the ground pushing to get vital road and rail upgrades done over the coming months.”

“As the city-shaping Metro Tunnel emerges above ground and the opening of the new Anzac Station tram stop later this month, crews will be working hard on upgrades that deliver turn-up-and-go services when it opens in 2025.”

Quote attributable to Minister for Public Transport Ben Carroll

“We thank Victorians for their patience as we get in and get these important road and rail works done, and urge everyone to plan ahead when exploring our wonderful city this summer.”

Reviewed 06 December 2022

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