Dec 8, 2009

Contract awarded for Western Hwy overtaking lanes

Contract awarded for Western Hwy overtaking lanes

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

December 8 2009

Construction of two additional overtaking lanes on the Western Highway west of Kaniva is set to start early next year, the first major works in a series of improvements on the road between Stawell and the South Australian border.

Federal Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese and Victorian Minister for Roads and Ports Tim Pallas today announced the overtaking lane improvements contract had been awarded to Fulton Hogan.

Mr Albanese said Fulton Hogan would build a 1.2 kilometre overtaking lane for motorists travelling towards Adelaide and a one kilometre overtaking lane for traffic heading to Melbourne.

“Importantly, the new dual overtaking lanes are part of a broader plan to give motorists and truck drivers regular, safe opportunities to overtake,” Mr Albanese said.

“Together the Rudd and Brumby Labor Governments are investing $50 million to improve safety and travel times along the Western Highway between Stawell and the South Australian border.”

The Western Highway safety package is a jointly funded initiative, with the Federal Government contributing $40 million and further funding provided by the Victorian Government.

Mr Pallas said it was the stretch of road on the Western Highway between Nhill and the border had seen a large number of fatal crashes, despite relatively low traffic volumes.

“For users of the highway the extra overtaking lanes will mean safer travel and less time travelling behind convoys of slower moving vehicles,” Mr Pallas said.

“Once completed, the overtaking lanes together with a new trailer exchange, decoupling and rest area in Nhill, will make for a safer, less frustrating trip through this spectacular part of Victoria.

“This is another example of the Rudd and Brumby Labor Governments working together to build a better, safer road network for motorists, local residents and businesses in Victoria.”

Future works on the Western Highway project will include upgrading rest areas and bridge strengthening projects.