The Andrews Labor Government’s 2016/17 Victorian Budget will provide the full funding required to build the Western Distributor – a long-overdue second river crossing that will slash travel times from Ballarat to Melbourne by 20 minutes.
The Member for Melton, Don Nardella said:
This will be a boon for Melton & Moorabool commuters reducing travel times to and from work.
I’m disappointed that Malcolm Turnbull (and Sarah Henderson) don’t think that a second river crossing and slashing travel times to Melbourne by 20 minutes from Geelong and Ballarat are a priority, but we won’t let them slow us down.
The Andrews Labor Government is getting on with building this vital road – with or without the help of Malcolm Turnbull (and Sarah Henderson).
The Western Distributor will provide a faster commute and more reliable journey to the thousands of Geelong/Ballarat commuters.”
The Labor Government is providing certainty to Geelong/Ballarat/Melton by allocating the $1.46 billion required over the forward estimates to get this project done.
The Labor Government will continue its attempts to convince the Turnbull Government that a second river crossing and the significant travel time savings from Geelong and Ballarat warrant Commonwealth investment, however the Government will get it done with or without them.
The Western Distributor will reduce congestion on the West Gate Freeway, provide a tunnel alternative to the West Gate Bridge and cut 20 minutes off a trip from Geelong or Ballarat.
The project will relieve peak-hour bumper-to-bumper traffic that is a major headache for motorists from Geelong and Ballarat and result in high quality transport infrastructure for city’s growing population. Direct connections to CityLink and to the north and south of the CBD will give Geelong and Ballarat area residents who work in Melbourne’s CBD more travel choices in getting to and from work.
Creating up to 5,600 jobs, the project will support economic development and jobs in Geelong and Ballarat and deliver an $11 billion boost to Victoria’s economy.
The Western Distributor involves widening the West Gate Freeway from 8 to 12 lanes, a tunnel under Yarraville, a second river crossing and an elevated road along Footscray Road connecting to CityLink, the Port and the north and south of the CBD.