Major work is underway on the new Chandler Highway bridge over the Yarra River at Alphington, widening the Chandler Highway to six lanes to get people through the area faster.

The $110 million project will create more than 100 jobs during construction and save drivers as much as 20 minutes during their commute.

The new bridge will be progressively lifted into place next to the existing bridge to minimise impacts to traffic and the existing 126-year-old bridge will be preserved and converted into a shared path for cyclists and pedestrians.

Minister for Roads, Luke Donnellan, said that the Chandler Highway connects Melbourne’s northern growth areas to the inner east and the CBD, so the new, wider bridge will reduce congestion and slash travel times.

There will be changed traffic conditions during each stage of construction, along with short-term bridge and lane closures.

Traffic will be continually monitored and managed to minimise disruption, but drivers are encouraged to plan ahead, use alternate routes or use public transport.

Signage with real-time traffic information will be available on routes around Chandler Highway to help drivers to plan their journey.

Traffic will switch to the new bridge mid-2018, with the final stage of the project complete by late 2018.

Construction is also underway on the removal of the dangerous and congested level crossing on Grange Road near the Chandler Highway, which will be gone by 2019.

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