RACV slams 'bandaid' solution to fix congestion


Motoring group lambasts government decision to ease congestion by widening emergency lanes on Melbourne's Eastern Freeway

August 9, 2011

Victoria’s motoring group RACV has slammed VicRoads’ plans to use emergency lanes on Melbourne’s Eastern Freeway to ease congestion, labelling it as a "bandaid" solution which will not fix traffic woes.

VicRoads is considering widening the emergency lanes by 1.8 metres in both directions of the freeway between Bulleen Road in Bulleen and Elgar Road in Doncaster.

RACV public policy general manager Brian Negus says Melbourne needs a long-term integrated transport plan comprising road and public transport projects to ease congestion and improve road safety instead of a "quick fix".

"This bandaid solution will not fix the problem," Negus says.

"Both roads and public transport needs to be addressed and RACV urges the State Government to develop a transport plan as a critical priority."

The group wants an east-west link from the Eastern Freeway to the Western Ring Road with tunnels to Citylink and under the Maribyrnong River to reduce congestion.

It also proposes a north-east link from the Metropolitan Ring Road and Greensborough to the Eastern Freeway and EasLink.

"Rather than just widening the emergency lanes and using these for traffic, a better interim solution would be to widen the freeway to create an additional lane for ramp traffic in both directions," Negus says.

"This would alleviate the turning traffic that is causing much of the problem. There is room to do this alternative treatment and also retain an emergency stopping lane for safety."

Road congestion costs Victorians $3 billion a year, which is predicted to double by 2020, Negus says.


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