Summer Construction Blitz Gets Underway

27 November 2020

Victorians are encouraged to plan ahead and allow extra travel time this summer, with work on Victoria’s Big Build to push ahead to deliver better transport across the state.

Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan today visited Werribee Street, one of three level crossings currently being removed in Werribee and Hoppers Crossing.

Werribee Street will be the Government’s 45th level crossing removal, as works ramp up across the state on a number of road and rail projects.

Much of the summer’s work will centre around Melbourne’s growing west – with buses to replace trains between Laverton and Werribee from Sunday 29 November until Sunday 6 December while crews complete the new Werribee Street rail bridge by the end of summer, more than a year ahead of its original 2022 completion date.

Work will also continue on more than 20 level crossings across Melbourne, with buses replacing trains for around a week at a time for works in Pakenham, Lilydale, Mooroolbark, Edithvale, Chelsea, Bonbeach and Glenroy Road – where the level crossing will be closed for seven weeks from 8 January as works ramp up for the new rail trench.

Deep under the city, the Metro Tunnel is a year ahead of schedule – with the rail tunnel excavation at State Library Station to be complete next month and TBMs Joan and Meg tunnelling from Parkville to the CBD, preparing to make space for more than half a million extra peak hour train trips each week, slashing travel times by up to 50 minutes.

Annual maintenance on the West Gate Bridge will take place from Boxing Day until 6 January, with three of the five outbound lanes to be closed and overnight closures impacting inbound lanes. Holiday makers heading to the Surf Coast are encouraged to plan for delays of up to 60 minutes.

The West Gate Freeway will close in both directions at Grieve Parade between 6 and 11 January, and inbound M80 traffic will be detoured, as crews on the West Gate Tunnel project demolish the outdated southbound bridge before rebuilding and strengthening it – with motorists advised to allow up to an extra 60 minutes travel time.

For six weeks from Monday 11 January, both inbound and outbound ramps from the Princes Freeway to Geelong Road and the M80 inbound ramp to the West Gate Freeway will also be closed.

From early December, concrete segments manufactured in Benalla will be taken to Footscray Road to build an elevated road as part of the West Gate Tunnel Project. These loads will move slowly because of their size and weight, and motorists using CityLink and the M80 Ring Road should be aware and only pass when it is safe.

The Government’s Western Roads Upgrade program will be finished in the new year, easing congestion and improving traffic flow on some of the west’s busiest local roads. As the final two upgrades are completed, there will be disruptions on Derrimut Road, Tarneit and Palmers Road, Truganina.

In the south-eastern suburbs, buses will replace trains between 26 November and 2 December and for five days in January as part of the Cranbourne Line Upgrade, providing for trains every ten minutes by duplicating the track from Dandenong to Cranbourne.

The Monash Freeway’s new world-class electronic road management signs will undergo testing to keep the 460,000 vehicles who use it each day moving, and overnight closures and daytime lane closures will also continue over the coming months as crews work to add 36 kilometres of extra lanes to the Monash and Princes Freeways.

Throughout January, Thames Promenade and Wells Road intersection in Chelsea Heights will be shut as part of works to build the new Mordialloc Freeway. Traffic lights are replacing the roundabout to allow traffic to flow more smoothly to and from the new freeway access ramps.

In Melbourne’s north, College Crescent in Parkville will close for two weeks in January between Princes Park Drive and the Swanston Street roundabout as crews re-asphalt the road. Motorists will be detoured using Hoddle Street, Nicholson Street and Flemington Road.

Crews on the M80 Upgrade – Sydney Road to Edgars Road will work around the clock in December to upgrade the Edgars Road interchange to the Ring Road. The interchange will close between 7 and 21 December so crews can build a second right turn lane onto the M80 Greensborough-bound, improving traffic flow on and off the freeway.

Work is forging ahead on North East Link, the state’s largest ever road project – with lane closures on Greensborough Road and Bulleen Road through summer to allow crews to move underground utilities before major construction begins next year.

On public transport, short tram track renewal works along Bridge Road and Church Street in January will deliver a smoother ride on Route 48 and 75.

In regional Victoria, the final phase of the Ballarat Line Upgrade will also get underway with coaches replacing trains for five weeks from Monday 28 December as crews integrate new track, signalling systems and other infrastructure onto the rail line, paving the way for introduction of extra services for Ballarat Line passengers in the new year.

Passenger trains on the Gippsland line will be able to travel at 90km/h over the new Avon River rail bridge from Monday 7 December - a welcome improvement on the 10km/h speed limit on the existing old bridge. To allow for final works, coaches will replace trains on sections of the Gippsland Line from 28 November to 6 December.

For more information about the planned disruptions over summer visit Link /disruptions

Quotes attributable to Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan

“As Victorians travel around the state for a COVID Safe summer, we’re encouraging people to plan ahead and allow extra time as works continue on our massive pipeline of infrastructure projects.”

“We’re delivering the big projects which will deliver more trains and keep traffic moving – whilst supporting thousands of jobs as our economy rebuilds after the pandemic.”

Quote attributable to Treasurer and Member for Werribee Tim Pallas

“We’re getting Victoria moving again with our Big Build – and we’re delivering these projects well ahead of schedule, with the new Werribee Street rail bridge to make journeys easier for people in the West more than a year early.”

Reviewed 26 November 2020

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