Roads | October 05, 2022
Safer roads in western Victoria under The Nationals’ $10 billion roads plan
Roads in western Victoria will be safer for all motorists with the Liberals and Nationals announcing $10 billion in funding over 10 years to fix Victoria’s crumbling road system.
The funding increase will be delivered through the annual road asset management budget, increasing spending from around $600 million to $1 billion annually.
Announcing the commitment on Wednesday, Shadow Minister for Roads Danny O’Brien said after almost a decade of Andrews Labor Government neglect, our roads had gone from bad to worse.
“The Andrews Labor Government has left Victoria’s road network crumbling, ignoring the genuine concern of road users across the state, in both the city and the country,” he said.
“Labor cut the road maintenance budget by 10 per cent when it came to government and, on top of recent wet years, our roads have never recovered.
“This $10 billion investment will deliver longer-term contracts to promote innovation, give contractors certainty to invest in better equipment and allow for strategic maintenance planning.
“It means Victorians won’t have to put up with band-aid solutions that only last weeks or months until the next heavy rain.”
As part of this investment, there will also be a review of construction standards, increasing accountability of VicRoads and contractors and a reduction in red and green tape that often escalates construction costs.
Deputy Leader of the Nationals and Member for Lowan Emma Kealy said The Nationals were committed to delivering better, safer roads through long-term, strategic planning across the road network.
“Good-quality roads are vital to ensure people can safely get to work, school, healthcare appointments and sporting commitments, and also so we can get our produce to market,” she said.
“But Labor has consistently neglected our roads and continually cut funding, forcing country people to drive on dangerous surfaces that are crumbling at the edges and riddled with potholes.
“Roads such as the Warracknabeal-Birchip Road, the Wimmera and Glenelg highways, Murtoa-Glenorchy Road, Coleraine-Edenhope Road, Donald-Murtoa Road, Mortlake-Ararat Road, Donald-Stawell Road, Stawell-Avoca Road and the Birchip-Rainbow Road are all in desperate need of funding to ensure they can be brought up to a safe standard.
“The Andrews Labor Government knows this, but refuses to provide the required funding, instead wasting money on cost blowouts on metropolitan projects.
“It simply isn’t good enough, and the problems are only getting worse.
“The Nationals will do a full audit of all roads managed by the Victorian Government to ensure no dangerous country road is missed.
“Well-maintained roads save lives, and this commitment by The Nationals will help fix our country roads and make them safe.”
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