Traffic chaos in Melbourne’s west set to continue for weeks
Commuters in Melbourne’s west endured delays this morning, as the return of most of the workforce coincided with a slew of major roadworks.
Some drivers were delayed by up to half an hour, with closures affecting the Western Ring Road, Westgate Freeway and multiple on and off ramps on major arterials.
Head of Transport Services at the Department of Transport, Jeroen Weimar, admitted it was a tough morning on the roads in the city’s west, and heavy congestion is expected to continue in coming weeks.
“It’s been quite a challenging morning out there, particularly for the people coming back from holidays for the first time and straight into a significant program of works out in the west,” he told 3AW’s Heidi Murphy, filling in for Neil Mitchell.
“It will be a bit messy.”
Works are currently underway on three major projects in the west: the resurfacing of the West Gate Bridge, the Western Roads Upgrade and a new phase of works on the West Gate Tunnel.
This morning journey times on Boundary Road blew out by 30 minutes, while commuters on the Western Ring Road took an extra 15 minutes to complete their journey, and those on the Princes Highway added 22 minutes to their usual travel time.
Congestion will ease after January 22nd, when the Dohertys Road and Fitzgerald Road intersection will reopen, but West Gate Tunnel works will see the M80 Ring Road off ramp on to the Princes Highway, and other major on and off ramps in the city’s west, closed until the end of February.
Mr Weimar said conditions will probably get worse before they get better.
“Today is a lot busier than a week ago, but it’s still a lot less busy than we are when the schools are back and everybody really is back at work after Australia Day,” he said.
“We will see delays.
“You should allow up to half an hour extra for your journey.”
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