3 March 2021
The West Gate Tunnel Project will provide a vital alternative to the West Gate Bridge, quicker and safer journeys, and remove over 9,000 trucks from residential streets in the inner west.
The project is a partnership between the Victorian Government and Transurban and is being built by a joint venture between CPB Contractors and John Holland. The West Gate Tunnel Project, Major Transport Infrastructure Authority is managing the project on behalf of the Victorian Government. There are 3 construction precincts for the project: West Gate Freeway, Tunnels, and Port to City. In the West Gate Freeway precinct we are building:
- extra lanes on the freeway between the M80 Ring Road and Williamstown Road
- entry and exit portals where the tunnels connect with the West Gate Freeway
- ventilation structure at the tunnel exit to remove air from inside the outbound tunnel
- interchange upgrades at the M80 Ring Road, Millers Road, Grieve Parade and Williamstown Road
- ramps to Hyde Street to connect trucks directly with local industry
- noise walls to reduce traffic noise for residents and open spaces
- walking and cycling paths to complete missing links in the Federation and Kororoit Creek trails and better connect communities, including new overpasses over Williamstown Road and Stony Creek
- pedestrian bridges replacing the existing overpasses
- a Freeway Management System to support good traffic flow and safety
- new open spaces and planting thousands of trees and other plants in the freeway area
We will do as much work as possible during the day, but because the roads we are working on are so important for moving people and goods around Melbourne, some works can only be done at night.
We will do our best to plan works at times when they cause the least inconvenience for residents, while also avoiding peak period lane closures and disruptions on the freeway to keep Melbourne moving during construction.
Widening the freeway
The West Gate Freeway is a critical link in Melbourne’s transport network, carrying 200,000 vehicles each day. We will keep it moving by:
- keeping the same number of lanes open at peak times
- only closing lanes when there is less traffic
- keeping the speed limit at 80km/h at peak times whenever possible
- providing clear and timely information for drivers
- working with VicRoads, councils, transport operators and emergency services to plan traffic changes
- avoiding closures when major events are on in Melbourne.
Upgrading the Federation Trail
The Federation Trail is being upgraded and extended to Hyde Street. A section of the trail between Millers Road and the Newport freight rail line is closed for around 10 months to complete the upgrade.
- providing a safe and clearly signed detour
- working with VicRoads, councils and cycling groups to plan and communicate the detour
- carrying out improvements along the detour if needed to make it safe.
Construction compounds provide a base for workers, equipment and machinery.
- meet all requirements, including those for managing noise, dust and traffic
- install fencing and screening when compounds are located near private property
- give our neighbors advance notice about what to expect during works
- reinstate or improve compound areas after construction
- provide parking for workers to avoid taking up space on local streets.
The main bases for construction in the West Gate Freeway area are:
- off the West Gate Freeway / New Street – for freeway widening and tunnel works
- off Geelong Road – for works around the M80 Ring Road interchange.
Changes to high-voltage power lines
Some electricity towers along the freeway have been moved or upgraded with slimmer poles and some power lines moved underground to make space for the widened freeway.
New noise walls
The West Gate Tunnel Project will deliver more than 9km of new and improved noise walls for quieter homes, backyards and parks along the West Gate Freeway.
- prioritise noise wall construction so residents get the benefit as early as possible
- leave existing noise walls in place where practical or provide temporary noise walls until new ones are built
- use high quality materials with acrylic at the top to let light in.
Building the Hyde Street ramps
Work areas have been located alongside the freeway where they are least likely to cause disruption and are fenced and screened from view.
Innovative construction methods help reduce disruption, including using cranes to lift beams down from the freeway to reduce disruption at Donald McLean Reserve.