Media release – 29/04/14

Western section of East West Link a key element in improving congestion and productivity

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The Napthine Government’s announcement to start work on the western section of the East-West Link is a key element in genuinely improving both commuter congestion and productivity.

Committee for Melbourne CEO Kate Roffey says “This is a very welcome and long overdue announcement. Not only will this major project be good for job creation and economic stimulation, the western link is also a very important productivity-enhancing project.

“As frustrated commuters sit on the Westgate bridge behind trucks making their way slowly uphill five abreast, we forget that improving road transport capacity is not just about moving people more efficiently, it is also ab out moving freight more effectively.”

We expect our fresh milk and bread to be on the super market shelf daily, and as congestion on our roads makes freight movement more difficult, the chances of our goods not arriving when we want them will likely increase.

Currently the freight industry is wholly dependent on the Westgate and M1 for east-west movement with over 2,700 tonnes per hour of goods being transported along that corridor alone. Not only do we need to provide relief along the Princes Highway and Westgate to allow for more efficient movement of people and freight, we need to create some redundancy for the Westgate Bridge itself, which is our only significant crossing over the Yarra.

A second Yarra crossing is a must, and providing a more dedicated option for truck movements between the M80, Princes Freeway, Port and M1 is essential to our freight task.

“That the Government has realised the importance of this project, and has indicated that it will be ‘shovel ready ’ within a year is a good move for ward for Melbourne”, continued Ms Roffey.

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