O’Brien drives home highway duplication
The Nationals Member for Gippsland South Danny O’Brien has put the full duplication of the Princes Highway between Traralgon and Sale on the State Government’s radar.
Mr O’Brien, who raised the issue in State Parliament, said current funding of $260 million would allow for 35km of the 47km section between Sale and Traralgon to be duplicated.
“VicRoads will award contracts for a further three sections over the next 12 months but that will still see 12km, from Sheepwash Creek to Flynn and the final section through Kilmany, unfinished.
“This final phase of full duplication is strongly supported by motorists in my electorate and the wider Gippsland region.” Mr O’Brien said in Parliament.
“My constituents are keen to see the entire Traralgon to Sale section duplicated and for the works to be completed as soon as possible.”
Mr O’Brien said he was working with his federal colleague, The Nationals Member for Gippsland, Darren Chester, to finish the project. The Princes Highway East duplication has been funded 80 per cent by the Commonwealth and 20 per cent by the State.
“To ensure that this can continue, Roads Minister Luke Donnellan needs to initiate discussions with the Commonwealth Government to secure the necessary funding.”
Mr O’Brien said the current phase of the project was funded for $260 million with an additional $160 million needed to fully duplicate the remaining sections between Sale and Traralgon.
“This is an important project that will deliver safer roads, better access for residents and tourists into Sale and East Gippsland, and most importantly improve freight efficiency for local businesses,” Mr O’Brien said.
“I urge the Roads Minister to advocate to the Commonwealth Government on behalf of Gippsland motorists to ensure that the project receives the required funding to complete the duplication.”
Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester said he had recently written to Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Warren Truss, seeking information on what extra Commonwealth funding might be available.
"The duplication project has always enjoyed bipartisan support and it's essential that both levels of government continue to provide funding to improve safety and economic productivity on our region's main transport link," Mr Chester said.
"I've begun discussions with the Federal Minister's office to secure our share of the remaining funding and look forward to working with Danny O'Brien to see this project completed.