West Gate Tunnel Project
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
The following news items come from the state government's West Gate Tunnel Project team.
Pedestrian overpasses lifted into place
The main pieces of two brand new pedestrian overpasses along the West Gate Freeway have now been lifted into place. While the freeway was closed, crews lifted and installed the structures at Muir Street and Rosala Avenue a few weeks ago. The new and improved pedestrian overpasses will be wider, to allow pedestrians and cyclists to comfortably share the space, and include improved safety features such as CCTV, lighting and higher barriers as well as all abilities accessible ramps. The overpasses will undergo further fit-out and installation works before opening to the public. Watch the video of the bridges being lifted into place here.
Wrapping up spring works
After six weeks of roadworks the Millers Road / West Gate Freeway interchange re-opened to traffic. Crews reconstructed the Millers Road inbound entry and exit ramps, which now have wider turning lanes, and installed new storm water drainage at the Millers Road interchange, in preparation to widen the area to allow better traffic flow. Read more here.
Freeway traffic switch complete
A significant milestone in widening the West Gate Freeway from eight to 12 lanes has been reached, following the completion of 10 weeks of works to move traffic onto brand new lanes. Around 10 kilometres of traffic lanes have now been shifted from the centre of the freeway to newly constructed lanes on the outer edges, allowing crews to setup new worksites in the middle. During this time crews:
- repositioned about 8km of temporary traffic barriers and marked 10km of lines
- installed 760 precast barriers
- laid 55,000 metres squared of pavement and 42,000 tonnes of asphalt
Air Pollution Report
An Inner West Air Quality Community Reference Group (CRG), established by the Victorian Government to investigate air pollution in Melbourne’s inner west, has made public its report.
The report – Air Pollution in Melbourne’s Inner West – Taking direct action to reduce our community’s exposure(PDF, 7MB) – makes 26 recommendations with 65 supporting actions. These are designed to:
- reduce air pollution from road transport and industry (including the West Gate Tunnel Project)
- improve the planning framework, government regulation and policy, air quality monitoring and community education
Click here for more information on the West Gate Tunnel Project soil management during construction.
Hyde Street ramps
As part of the West Gate Tunnel Project, works will soon begin building two new ramps for the West Gate Freeway. The new ramps will connect trucks directly to local industry and get them off local roads. The ramp on the northern side of the freeway will provide a new exit ramp for inbound traffic from the West Gate Freeway to a new signalised intersection at Hyde Street.
The ramp on the southern side of the freeway will provide a new entry ramp for westbound traffic from a new intersection at Simcock Avenue and Stephen Street through to the West Gate Freeway. To find out more about this part of the project click here to view the works notification from the West Gate Tunnel Project.(PDF, 412KB)
Installation of new noise walls
The West Gate Tunnel Project team will install new, high quality permanent noise walls on Fogarty Avenue between Wembley Avenue and The Boulevard. The new noise wall will be between eight and nine metres high and will be made of textured concrete panels with pale blue and green coloured acrylic panels at the top in some sections. To find out more about the installation of noise walls on Fogarty Avenue click here.(PDF, 319KB)
Regular updates are available on the project webpage by clicking here.
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.
On road signage will be in place advising of detours and work zone speed limits. Signed work zone speed limits will be enforced. All works mentioned below are weather dependent and may change due to inclement weather conditions. On road signage will advise of any changes.
For the latest updates and detour route information visit the West Gate Tunnel Project Page - Travel Disruptions
Shared trail path closure
Ongoing until November 2020
- The Kororoit Creek Shared Trail is closed under the West Gate Freeway
- Detour via existing footpath on the east side of Grieve Parade
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.
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.
For further information please contact Council’s Strategic planning Department on 9932 1109.
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 $5 million 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:
- 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 email@example.com 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
Western Distributor Authority
GPO Box 4509
MELBOURNE VIC 3001
West Gate Tunnel Information Centre
Address: corner of Somerville Road and Whitehall Street, Yarraville
Monday to Friday: 10am - 5pm
Saturday: 10am - 4pm
and by appointment