The second stage of construction on the Monash Freeway upgrade has begun, with the centre median of the corridor transformed into a work site. The $1.4 billion project received an additional $367.5 million in September.
Work is already underway on the freeway shoulder to maintain lane availability during construction, and temporary line marking will begin in the coming weeks.
Barriers are being installed along the freeway, which will be expanded from eight to ten lanes between Springvale Road and EastLink – with an extra outbound lane built between Warrigal Road and Springvale Road. The freeway will also be expanded from four to six lanes between Clyde Road and Cardinia Road.
Smart transport technology and new overhead gantries will be installed on the Monash, giving motorists live traffic information and better lane management during incidents to keep traffic flowing.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, said the upgrade would ensure the Monash Freeway supported continued growth in traffic numbers in the expanding south-east.
“We want to meet the huge demand for this corridor which is why beyond adding extra lanes, we’re improving links to the Monash,” Mr McCormack said.
“It’s all part of the Federal Government’s record $100 billion pipeline of infrastructure projects helping Australians reach their destinations more safely and quickly.”
As well as creating hundreds of local jobs, the project – which is being delivered by Major Road Projects Victoria – will improve efficiency for thousands of businesses and motorists in the south-east.
Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure, Alan Tudge, said the Monash overhaul would mean thousands of Melbourne motorists getting home sooner and safer.
“It’s a game-changer for the hard-working people who travel on the Monash every day and who don’t want to be sitting bumper to bumper traffic,” Mr Tudge said.
“People will be saving as much as 1 hour and forty minutes a week across peak hour trips between Malvern and Pakenham.”
Victorian Minister for Transport Infrastructure, Jacinta Allan, said keeping freight and commuters moving during construction was a priority throughout construction.
“The freeway will remain open during peak periods, and we’ll schedule any major lane closures outside of busy times,” Ms Allan said.
Federal Member for La Trobe, Jason Wood, said the project would deliver long-lasting benefits for his local community.
“The project will add extra lane in either direction from Clyde Road to Cardinia Road and upgrade Beaconsfield Interchange, the extension of O’Shea Road in Berwick, which will facilitate the Minta City development, opening 10,000 new job opportunities which would greatly benefit residents in the south east,” Mr Wood said.
The upgrade is expected to be complete in 2022. The project is jointly funded by the Australian and Victorian Governments, with the Australian Government committing $683.8 million and the Victorian Government committing the remainder.