Big Build To Improve Travel Times In East

  • Minister for Transport Infrastructure

New modelling released today shows North East Link will slash travel times and boost safety as works on the project get underway.

New modelling shows peak hour speeds on the Eastern Freeway currently drop to around 45km/h – but with planned upgrades, lane widening and Victoria’s first dedicated bus lane, speeds will increase to 85km/h during peak and 100km/h off-peak.

From 2016-2020 there were 2,327 crashes in the North East Link area – 20 of them were fatal and 530 caused serious injury. Once built, North East Link is expected to have one of the lowest crash rates in Victoria, cutting crashes by 108 every year.

Safety improvements on North East Link will include reducing truck traffic on local streets, building more separate shared user paths and separating cars on an upgraded Eastern Freeway – which will also have a dedicated bus way.

The $15.8 billion North East Link will carry up to 135,000 motorists every day, connect the upgraded Eastern Freeway to the M80 and deliver travel time savings of up to 11 minutes on the Eastern Freeway between Springvale Road and Hoddle Street.

The North East Link will deliver Victoria’s first ever dedicated busway – delivering safer and faster trips for passengers on the state’s busiest routes, and cutting travel time by 30 per cent from Doncaster to Hoddle St.

The upgraded Doncaster Park and Ride and a new Park and Ride in Bulleen will also give more people access to the improved busway – which will connect to the Streamlining Hoddle Street project, which introduced 24/7 clearways for dedicated bus lanes between the Eastern Freeway and Victoria Parade as part of its $110 million upgrade.

In addition to the North East Link, the Andrews Labor Government is investing more than $1 billion in road and rail projects to free up the transport network and keep people moving in the eastern suburbs.

Six level crossings have been removed at Mitcham, Blackburn, Bayswater, Alphington and Glen Iris, and another five will go on the Belgrave, Lilydale and Glen Waverley lines. The Toorak Road level crossing will be gone for good more than six months ahead of schedule, with trains travelling over the new rail bridge by April.

The Metro Tunnel Project will also cut travel times in the east, with passengers on the Alamein and Lilydale Lines enjoying reduced travel times of up to 10 minutes to trips to Parkville and St Kilda Road once the project is complete.

The Labor Government is also delivering almost $20 million in active transport upgrades in Box Hill, Ringwood and to the East Link trail.

As stated by Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan

“We’re making improvements to the Eastern Freeway in preparation for the North East Link – easing bottlenecks that have plagued people in the east for years.”

As stated by Member for Bayswater Jackson Taylor

“We’re delivering the major transport projects that communities in Melbourne’s east need – getting people to work and back home to their families safer and sooner.”

/Public Release. View in full here.