Bypass budget ‘blowout’ blasted

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THE state opposition has blasted a “massive cost blowout” on the construction of the Mordialloc Freeway.

The nine kilometer stretch of road, which will link the Mornington Peninsula Freeway at Springvale Road in Aspendale Gardens to the Dingley Bypass in Dingley Village, was estimated to cost around $375 million.

Shadow minister for roads Gordon Rich-Phillips said the “2019-20 mid-year budget update shows that costs for Labor’s projects continue to blowout, including on the Mordialloc Freeway.”

“In May 2017, Labor committed $300 million to fully fund the project, before having another $75 million injected into the troubled project in the 2018/19 budget,” he said.

“The mid-year budget update released yesterday shows another $148 million has had to be funnelled into the project as Labor continues to oversee massive cost blowouts in projects across Victoria.”

The mid year budget update from the state government read that $148.2 million has been allocated to the road project, spread out over the next four years.

“Additional funding will be provided to deliver the full scope of the road connection and to address additional scope required as a result of the outcomes of the Environment Effects Statement process, such as additional noise attenuation requirements,” the budget read. 

“The new link will increase the connectivity of the arterial road network and draw through traffic away from residential areas in Aspendale Gardens and Mordialloc. This will improve the local amenity in those areas as well as broader transport network efficiency in south-east Melbourne.”

After being identified as preferred tenderer in March, McConnell Dowell-Decmil Joint Venture was officially awarded the contract to design and construct the freeway in September. They said that 75,000 motorists were predicted to use the route daily by 2031.

The project is expected to be finished in late 2021.

First published in the Chelsea Mordialloc Mentone New – 25 December 2019

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