Thursday 28 June 2018
A Melbourne ‘Super Highway’ – Building an East West Link and a North East Link
Today I am announcing that a Liberal Nationals Government will build the biggest connected super highway in Australia and get Victoria moving again.
We need to stop playing catch-up and start getting ahead.
Only the Liberal Nationals will build an East West Link and a North East Link.
Only the Liberal Nationals will remove traffic lights and roundabouts through grade separations at 55 of Melbourne and Geelong’s busiest, most congested intersections.
Only the Liberal Nationals have a comprehensive congestion-busting plan for Melbourne’s highways and arterial roads.
Only the Liberal Nationals will deliver around 19,000 jobs in the construction of an East West Link, a North East Link and the removal of 55 intersections.
A Liberal Nationals Government will build an East West Link so we can fix the end of the Eastern Freeway before completing the construction of a North East Link which will put an extra 100,000 more cars on to the Eastern Freeway.
Daniel Andrews wants to build his North East Link without fixing the Eastern Freeway and that’s a plan for 24 hour gridlock.
Under the Liberal Nationals plan, both an East West Link and a North East Link would be developed in tandem. In a first term Liberal Nationals Government, at least $2 billion will be allocated to these projects from the state government with almost $5 billion expected from the federal government. It is anticipated that further monies may be needed in future forward estimates.
In our first 100 days of government the North East Link Authority will be re-tasked to manage and deliver both an East West Link and a North East Link super-project.
Construction on an East West Link will commence in 2020-21 following final determination of the route in consultation with the Office of Projects Victoria. Construction on the first stages of a North East Link will commence by the end of 2020.
It is intended that an East West Link and a North East Link will be fully completed by around 2026 and 2027 respectively.
A Liberal Nationals Government will consult with the Office of Projects Victoria on two proposed routes for an East West Link.
The first proposed route is through a central corridor broadly connecting from the Eastern Freeway through to CityLink north of the City.
The second proposed route for examination is through a southern corridor connecting from the Eastern Freeway through to the West Gate Tunnel.
In tandem with the construction of an East West Link, a Liberal Nationals Government will continue with the development of a North East Link consistent with the current timeline but including an immediate review to change elements of the design, including tunnel portal location and property acquisitions.
It is intended that private property, business and educational land acquisitions for this project be reduced through design changes and private, community and industrial land be saved through tunnel portal redesigns. Labor’s construction of an enormous spaghetti junction at Bulleen Road – threatening local homes – as well as their plans for a 15 lane Eastern Freeway beyond Bulleen Road will also be changed as would the current adverse impacts on property, land use and loss of parkland.
The recommendations of this review are likely to see changes to improve the current design such as tunnel length, interchange design, property acquisitions and protecting parkland.
A Liberal Nationals Government will also assess the current procurement strategy and phasing of key North East Link project components such as staging the procurement to ensure that the project is delivered in an economically responsible way. This will also allow a Liberal Nationals Government to ensure that the staging of a North East Link and an East West Link economically and logistically efficient.
Melbourne is jam-packed and about to hit the 5 million mark. Melbourne cannot continue growing at this pace until our roads, transport and services infrastructure catches up.
Melbourne needs an East West Link, a North East Link and the removal of 55 traffic light intersections through grade separation.
Melburnians have never before felt under so much pressure. We are spending more time at work, more time stuck in traffic and less time with family and friends.
Traffic congestion makes our roads dangerous for all road users.
Traffic congestion costs our economy around $5.54 billion a year.
Traffic congestion causes delays and frustrations which means we have less time to spend with family and friends.
Census data shows that 74% of Melburnians take a car to work every day. That’s why more of Daniel Andrews and Labor’s band-aid approach won’t cut it anymore.
We can’t keep playing this game of infrastructure catch-up and we have to start getting ahead.
Daniel Andrews and Labor don’t support an East West Link and wasted $1.3 billion of taxpayers’ money when he tore up the contract after promising voters it wasn’t worth the paper it was written on. If the East West Link project went ahead it would now be almost complete and ready for a North East Link to connect to the Eastern Freeway.
A Liberal Nationals State Government will allocate at least $2 billion as initial funding from the Victorian Government towards the construction of an East West Link and North East Link during the next term.
In addition to the Victorian Liberal Nationals plan to build an East West Link and a North East Link and remove 55 of our most congested traffic light intersections, the Turnbull Government will provide nearly $5 billion for construction of both links.
Unlike Daniel Andrews and Labor, we will not introduce or increase tolls on any existing roads, including the Eastern Freeway, to fund the construction of this Super Highway.
Victorians now have a clear choice on infrastructure. The Liberal Nationals who support both an East West Link and a North East Link and removal of 55 traffic light intersections or Labor who only want to build a North East Link that will channel 100,000 more cars into a car park on the Eastern Freeway.