West Gate Tunnel, State Government

West Gate Tunnel, State Government

About the project

The West Gate Tunnel, originally called the Western Distributor, is a proposed toll road that will link the West Gate Freeway at Yarraville with CityLink at Docklands via a tunnel beneath Yarraville. It aims to relieve congestion on the M1, provide an alternative river crossing to the West Gate Bridge and move trucks away from inner west homes. Major construction commenced in early 2018 following the Minister for Planning's approval of the Environmental Effects Statement (EES) and will be completed in 2022. 

The project will include:

  • an upgrade and widening of the West Gate Freeway by two lanes in each direction between Williamstown Road and M80 interchange
  • a 1.5 km-long, six-lane tunnel
  • a new bridge over the Maribyrnong River with twin viaducts above Footscray Road and connections to the Port of Melbourne, CityLink, Dynon Road and extension of Wurundjeri Way to Dynon Road
  • over 14km of new and upgraded cycling and walking paths - including a 2.5km veloway above Footscray Road
  • improved pedestrian and cycling connections between communities along the West Gate Freeway
  • Nearly 9 ha, of new community open space including parkland and wetlands and more than 17,000 trees planted.

Upcoming work

In early 2018, work commenced to prepare for construction including moving some power lines and gas and sewer pipes, setting up construction compounds and clearing some vegetation. This will be followed by commencement of freeway widening works and noise wall construction.

Regular updates are available on the project webpage by clicking here.

Traffic Update 

Do you need to change your route? Plan ahead to avoid delays.

Works are being conducted along the West Gate Freeway and surrounding major roads in preparation for the West Gate Tunnel Project. 

Council has been advised of the following traffic alerts. For the latest updates and detour route information visit the West Gate Tunnel Project Page - Travel Disruptions

  • Sunday 15 and Monday 16 July, 10pm-5am

The West Gate Freeway will be closed in both directions between Millers Road and Williamstown Road.

  • Tuesday 17 July, 10pm-5am

The West Gate Freeway will be closed in both directions between M80 and Millers Road.

  • Wednesday 18 July 2018, 10pm-5am

The West Gate Freeway will be closed inbound between Millers Road and Williamstown Road. One outbound lane will remain open.

  • Thursday 19 July 2018, 10pm-5am

The West Gate Freeway will be closed inbound between Millers Road and the M80. One outbound lane will remain open.


West Gate Freeway widening

27 July 2018 - mid 2019

To allow for the future widening of the freeway and new freeway ramps, new retaining walls need to be built alongside three of the freeway ramps at Millers Road, starting at the inbound entry ramp.

These works will include:

  • excavation and earth works;
  • construction of retaining walls on the freeway ramps and piling; and
  • general construction.

Building a temporary inbound exit ramp

1 August 2018 - February 2019

To provide space for the construction of the new inbound exit ramp, a temporary one will be built first. Preparation works will begin by establishing the area for the temporary ramp.

These works will include:

  • clearing vegetation and trees;
  • installation of a temporary noise wall; and 
  • removal of an existing section of noise wall.

Upgrading Millers Road

27 July - May 2019

Millers Road will be widened by one lane in each direction. We will start with constructing the new southbound lane underneath the freeway and then moving onto the additional northbound lane later in the year.


These works will include:

  • setting up traffic barriers beneath the freeway, southbound Millers Road and the footpath;
  • temporary closure of the footpath on the east side of Millers Road beneath the freeway. The footpath on the other side of Millers Road will remain open;
  • piling and retaining wall construction on the east side of Millers Road beneath the freeway; and
  • utility service investigations ahead of relocation works.

Site compound

27 July 2018 - August 2018

Works will start on the construction of a site compound adjacent to the Federation Trail. This site will provide facility for staff and storage of equipment and materials. 

Long term diversion of Federation Trail

For mid-July 2018

The Federation Trail will be closed between Millers Road and the Newport freight line for approximately four years for freeway widening works and shared-use path upgrades as part of the project. A detour is in place and the trail will be signposted.  A detour map is shown below.


What you can expect while these works are under way.

  • mobilising of piling rig, excavator and trucks to remove material;
  • dust and dirt will be minimised by using spray trucks and covering dirt and rick when it is being transported;
  • construction noise such as excavating and reversing beepers from machinery and trucks;
  • noise levels will be monitored;
  • bus stop 232 will remain open; and
  • traffic changes will be required including lane, ramps and footpath closures. Signed detours will be in place - latest traffic updates will be available here.

These works will generally be carried out from Monday - Friday between 7am and 6pm and on Saturdays between 7am and 3pm, however some night works will be required.

When works are scheduled out of hours, or if you're located close to the works, the West Gate Tunnel Project will provide further information to you before these works start.

Please note that works may be rescheduled in the event of bad weather or other unavoidable circumstances.

Construction Precincts

West Gate Freeway precinct: upgrading and widening the freeway from 8 to 12 lanes. New express lanes between the M80 and the West Gate Bridge will reduce weaving and merging that leads to traffic congestion.

Tunnels precinct: new tunnels from the West Gate Freeway to the Maribyrnong River, taking motorists and trucks underground and off residential streets.

Port to City precinct: a new bridge over the Maribyrnong River and an elevated road along Footscray Road will provide direct links to the Port of Melbourne, CityLink and an extended Wurundjeri Way.


The $6.7 billion project was proposed by Transurban in 2014.

The Victorian Government announced in December 2015 it would proceed with the project with planning approval granted in late 2017.

Environmental Effects Statement (EES) 

 The EES for the West Gate Tunnel Project looked at the potential effects of the design, its construction and operation and allowed the community to voice their concerns.

Formal submissions were invited from the community during a six week consultative period which closed in July 2017.

The EES was managed by Victorian Government's Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) and assessed 17 areas including but not limited to transport, air quality, noise, landscape and visual amenity, vibration, business, ecology, social and human health.

Members of the public interested in learning more about the EES can view the West Gate Tunnel EES documentation here.

Amendment Summary

This Planning Scheme Amendment was prepared by the Minister for Planning, who is the planning authority for this amendment.

The amendment was made at the request of Western Distributor Authority (WDA), an administrative office within the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (DEDJTR), to facilitate the delivery of the West Gate Tunnel Project.

The Amendment came into operation on 7 December 2017, when a notice was published in the Government Gazette. The amendment changes the planning scheme to amend the schedules to Clause 52.03 and Clause 81.01 to insert a new incorporated document titled West Gate Tunnel Project Incorporated Document, December 2017.

The amendment changes the Hobsons Bay Planning Scheme to:

  • amend the Schedule to Clause 61.01 to make the Minister for Planning the responsible authority for the administration and enforcement of provisions of the planning schemes as they apply to the use and development of land for the project
  • apply the Design and Development Overlay to land in Hobsons Bay that is above and adjacent to project infrastructure to ensure new development does not compromise the structural integrity or operation of that infrastructure
  • insert Schedule 15 to the Design and Development Overlay (DDO15) and Schedule 16 to the Design and Development Overlay (DDO16)
  • amend the Schedule to Clause 66.04 to make the Secretary to the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources (and the Roads Corporation from 31 December 2026) the determining referral authority for applications under DDO15 and DDO16

A copy of the Amendment can be inspected, free of charge, at the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning website by clicking here.

For further information please contact Council’s Strategic planning Department on 9932 1109.

What is Council's position on the project?

Council’s position on the EES was endorsed at Ordinary Council Meeting on Tuesday 13 June. You can view the Council meeting minutes here.

Please follow this link to read the media release: EES congested with detail and not enough time

Please follow this link to read the media release: Action needed on trucks and traffic from West Gate tunnel

Council's response to the Ministers report on the EES can be found by clicking here.

What role does Council have in the project?

The West Gate Tunnel project will have far reaching effects on the Hobsons Bay community, including how local areas look and how people travel. 

View Council's endorsed position.(PDF, 1MB)

Hobsons Bay City Council would like to thank the community who provided feedback during the development of Council’s position on the project. 

This position document enables Council to advocate on behalf of its community to ensure that the Hobsons Bay community needs are heard and listened to and gives Council a more powerful voice during the design process. 

Council is actively engaged in responding to the detailed plans and designs for this project, the Traffic Management Plans and is represented on the Community Liaison Group and the Traffic Management Liaison Group.

Community Sports and Open Space Enhancement Program

Following the release of the Minister's assessment, the Victorian Government as a part of the WGTP, agreed to partner with Hobsons Bay City Council to fund the delivery of capital improvements to its sport and recreation reserves and facilities up to the value of $5M on appropriate projects.

In February 2018, Council endorsed a Sports and Open Space Enhancement and Access Capital Improvement Program forming the West Gate Tunnel Community Legacy for the following areas:

  • Brooklyn
  • Donald McLean Reserve, Spotswood
  • WLJ Crofts Reserve, Altona North

While planning has commenced, the scopes for the proposed projects within the package are still to be finalised.


Have a Question?

Questions relating to the West Gate Tunnel Project, the EES documentation and the community information sessions should be directed to the Western Distributor Authority

Questions relating to the EES process should be directed to the Impact Assessment Unit of the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) at environment.assessment@delwp.vic.gov.au or by calling (03) 8392 5503.

Questions relating to the EPA Works Approval application process should be directed to the Environment Protection Authority by calling 1300 372 842.


West Gate Tunnel Contacts

Call: 1800 105 105

Email: Westgatetunnelproject@wda.vic.gov.au


Western Distributor Authority

GPO Box 4509


Facebook: facebook.com/WestGateTunnelProject

Twitter: @westgatetunnel

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