An Australian infrastructure construction company has been awarded the contract to work on Melbourne’s M80 Ring Road upgrade.

Fulton Hogan won the contract and will begin work on the upgrade between Sunshine Avenue and the Calder Freeway.

Federal Minister for Urban Infrastructure Paul Fletcher said the Australian and Victorian government-funded project will ease congestion and provide a safer experience for the 160,000 vehicles that use the freeway every day.

“This upgrade will provide a vital injection of jobs, unlock economic capacity, and better serve our communities now and for decades to come,” Mr Fletcher said.

“The project will upgrade 3.2 kilometres, resulting in more lanes in each direction, improved interchanges, a better experience for pedestrians and cyclists via a revamped shared user path, and widening, strengthening and safety improvements to the EJ Whitten Bridge.”

Victorian Minister for Roads, Road Safety Luke Donnellan said the Ring Road will be widened from two lanes to four to fix the notorious bottleneck at Sunshine Avenue.

“Ramp signalling and an overhead Lane Use Management System will also help to ensure a smoother and more efficient journey for motorists,” Mr Donnellan said.

“The M80 Ring Road Upgrade will slash travel time by saving Greensborough-bound motorists up to 15 minutes and Altona-bound motorists up to 10 minutes.”

“The Upgrade will see a boost to the Victorian economy with the creation of 1,350 direct and indirect jobs.”

The project is expected to be completed by late 2018.

The Australian and Victorian Governments are each contributing $150 million towards the $300 million project.

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