Early work has begun on two of Melbourne’s busiest freeways, with geotechnical drilling underway on the Sydney Road to Edgars Road section of the M80 Ring Road and the second stage of the Monash Freeway Upgrade.
These vital corridors connect drivers to a network of arterial roads across Victoria, and the upgrades will collectively create more than 850 jobs.
The $518 million upgrade between Sydney Road and Edgars Road is the fifth section to be improved as part of the upgrade of the M80 Ring Road.
The completed projects will provide safer and more reliable journeys every day for more than 165,000 cars and 22,000 trucks across the northern and western suburbs.
Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said the latest Monash and M80 upgrades would transform the two key freeways.
“Thousands of Victorians know how busy the M80 Ring Road and Monash can be during peak hour, and we’re getting on with the preliminary construction to get people home sooner and safer,” Mr Tudge said.
Victorian Minister for Transport Infrastructure Jacinta Allan said the upgrade will slash almost 10 minutes off a morning peak hour trip between Pakenham and the city.
“We’re improving vital road corridors in every direction you look, and these upgrades to the M80 and Monash will bring relief to hundreds of thousands of drivers each day,” Ms Allan said.
The upgrade will enhance connections to major freeways and interstate links including the Hume Freeway, future North East Link, Princes and West Gate Freeways and the future West Gate Tunnel.
Workers have begun geotechnical investigations and inspections of the project site, which will shape the final designs of this section of the M80 Upgrade ahead of major construction starting in mid-2020.
New lanes will be added on the four-kilometre stretch between Sydney and Edgars Roads, and entry and exit ramps will be built to improve safety and remove weaving.
Major construction on stage two of the $1.4 billion Monash Freeway upgrade begins next month and this important work will improve trips for almost half a million daily motorists in Melbourne’s south-east.
The Monash Freeway will be expanded from eight to ten lanes between Springvale Road and EastLink, and from four to six lanes between Clyde Road and Cardinia Road. Better connections will also be created at Beaconsfield and link to an upgraded and extended Oshea Road that will feature two extra lanes in each direction.
The upgrade will also create a new outbound entry to the Monash Freeway at Police Road and a modified outbound Jacksons Road entry to EastLink, making it easier and safer to access the Monash and EastLink.
Survey and geotechnical works are underway, as well as shoulder preparations on the freeway to keep lanes open during construction.
The Monash and the M80 will both remain open during peak periods to keep freight and commuters moving and to minimise disruption.
Smart transport technology and new overhead gantries will be installed on both the Monash and M80 to give motorists live traffic information and better lane management during incidents to keep traffic moving.
The Monash Freeway upgrade is expected to be complete in 2022, while work on the M80 is due for completion by early 2023.
Both projects are jointly funded by the Australia and Victorian Governments and are being delivered by Major Road Projects Victoria.