Ms VAGHELA (Western Metropolitan): My constituency question is directed to the Honourable Ben Carroll MP, Minister for Public Transport and Minister for Roads and Road Safety. With Victorians returning to work, the Western Metropolitan Region is experiencing serious traffic conditions. A resident of the western suburbs must leave home many hours before 9.00 am to make it to the workplace in the city or eastern suburbs. My constituents in the Western Metropolitan Region will have to deal with traffic problems for the foreseeable future because of the West Gate Tunnel’s construction delays. The outer western suburbs are facing harsher traffic situations as the roads are not developed and people do not have alternative routes. It is absurd to have such terrible traffic conditions in an era of soaring inflation and gas prices. My question to the minister is: can the minister please provide me an update on what steps are being taken to ease congestion on Western Metropolitan Regions roads?
Ben Carroll MP, Minister for Public Transport, Minister for Roads and Road Safety(23 June 2022):
The Andrews Labor Government is investing in transport projects across Melbourne’s west to improve traffic flow and cater to the rapidly growing community.
As part of the $125.7 million Metropolitan Road Upgrades Program as announced in the 2022/23 Victorian Budget, a number of critical roads in Melbourne’s west will be upgraded.
This includes $18.6 million to improve safety and reduce the risk of crashes and delays, with new traffic lights at the intersection of Derrimut Road at Hopkins Road and Boundary Road in Tarneit. Servicing several surrounding suburbs, Derrimut Road connects locals to schools, shops, and Tarneit Station. With a significant number of industrial sites nearby it is also a major freight route, and a primary arterial for motorists accessing the Princes Highway.
It’s a further boost for motorists who are already benefitting from the duplication of Derrimut Road between Sayers Road and Dohertys Road, with the project adding a lane in each direction and upgrading nine intersections as part of the $1.8 billion Western Roads Upgrade.
Along the Melton Highway, $14.9 million will deliver road duplication works between Crown Drive and The Regency intersection in Plumpton, benefitting all road users including pedestrians and cyclists.
This builds on $36.9 million in the November 2020 budget for upgrades to intersections at Melton Highway and Leakes Road in Plumpton, High Street and Coburns Road in Melton, and Norton Drive and High Street in Melton.
Additionally, the Ballarat Rail Line Upgrade is complete and is delivering extra weekly services for the growing communities along the line. The project duplicated 18 kilometres of track between Deer Park West and Melton, built the new Cobblebank train station between Rockbank and Melton, and rebuilt Rockbank train station. Service benefits delivered along the line include:
- 225 extra services stopping at Cobblebank Station each week
- 210 extra services stopping at Rockbank Station each week
- 140 extra services stopping at Melton Station each week
- 125 extra services stopping at Caroline Springs Station each week.
DoT will continue to work with transport partners, including local councils out West, to monitor the network to identify opportunities for future improvements