Works are underway as part of a $272 million package of improvement works targeting the Great Ocean Road and its inland routes, as well as key roads which support the dairy industry in Victoria’s south west.

Crews have started on $17.4 million worth of work on the Barwon South West Dairy Supply Chain, ensuring the network is stronger for trucks and tractors travelling between local farms, depots and processing facilities.

Victorian Minister for Roads and Road Safety, Ben Carroll, said, “This investment in the network supports the growth and development of the farming and tourism industries in the south west.

“These works will not only support local economies, but they’ll also provide safer and more reliable journeys for local residents.”

Roads being targeted as part of work on the dairy routes include sections of Cobden-Warrnambool Road, Cobden-Stonyford Road, Cobden-Camperdown Road and the Princes Highway, which have all been identified as priority roads.

Crews are completing rebuilding and resurfacing upgrades to improve strength and longevity of the roads, while assessments will also be done to safeguard the integrity of bridges in the area. 

Upgrades to the Dairy Supply Chain are anticipated to be completed by mid-2021, weather permitting. Planning and development for future upgrades on dairy routes will also be a feature of the multi-million-dollar package.

Victorian Minister for Ports and Freight, Melissa Horne, said, “We’re not wasting any time starting work on the Barwon South West Dairy Supply Chain, and by later this year these routes will be better equipped to carry trucks and tractors, meaning goods can get to market more efficiently.”

Member for Western Victoria, Gayle Tierney, said, “We’re investing in these popular routes so that they can accommodate local residents, farmers and millions of visitors each year.”

The Victorian Government’s $140 million investment to improve the resilience of the Great Ocean Road and $115 million investment to upgrade inland roads connecting with the Princes Highway are set to roll out over the coming months.

Crews will be doing bridge strengthening, road rebuilding and geotechnical works at sites along the Great Ocean Road including Orchard Creek, Princetown and Gellibrand River, with additional works being done on inland routes like Cobden-Port Campbell Road.

The improvements will ensure the Great Ocean Road and the surrounding connections can support the region’s $1.5 billion tourism industry, as well as local freight operators and communities right across south western Victoria.

Member for South Barwon, Darren Cheeseman, said, “These improvements will boost the region’s economy through both jobs on the ground and throughout the local supply chain.”

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