West Gate Tunnel crews are currently working around the clock on bridges that will provide another way to travel to universities and hospitals located to the north of the city.
Melbourne’s major freeways move millions of people and important goods every day and the West Gate Freeway is one of the busiest, moving more than 200,000 vehicles a day.
The West Gate Bridge is at capacity and a single incident can bring the traffic network to a standstill.
In addition, trucks in the west have no alternative but to use local roads to get to the port.
The West Gate Tunnel Project aims to ease congestion on the West Gate Freeway and West Gate Bridge, and reduce the number of trucks on residential streets. It will also allow faster access to the Melbourne Airport from Melbourne’s west.
A major milestone had already been reached on the West Gate Tunnel project at the start of May, with tunnel boring complete on the two twin tunnels that aims to create a much-needed alternative to the congested West Gate Bridge.
Tunnel boring machine (TBM) Bella had then broken through in South Kingsville – completing a 4km journey from the west side of the Maribyrnong River under Yarraville to just east of Millers Road near the West Gate Freeway.
When completed, the West Gate Tunnel Project will widen the West Gate Freeway from eight to 12 through lanes, including express lanes for vehicles heading to the south and southeastern suburbs.
It will give drivers a choice between the tunnel or the bridge as well as building new links to the port, CityLink and the city.