Tuesday, 12 February 2019
Menzies Electorate: Traffic Congestion
The No. 1 local issue in my electorate of Menzies is traffic congestion. In survey after survey and in conversations with constituents at the local shopping centres and with people who come to see me, traffic congestion is invariably identified as the No. 1 issue. Whether it's in Bulleen or Doncaster, Warrandyte or north of the river, in Eltham, Research or Warrandyte North, traffic congestion comes up time and time again as the No. 1 issue.
The geography of Melbourne is such that a major divide between the northern suburbs and the south-eastern suburbs is the Yarra River. The regrettable fact is that there are very few crossings of the Yarra River. Once you move east of the city, there are only crossings at Clifton Hill and then out a little bit further at Abbotsford and Alphington and that area and then you go out to Heidelberg and Bulleen and then to Fitzsimons Lane and kilometres and kilometres further to Warrandyte. This means that there are therefore funnels and pinch points so far as traffic is concerned in moving north-south, and that of course also means, because of the layout of the river, traffic moving east-west in Melbourne. As I said, for my constituents in Bulleen, Templestowe and across the river in Eltham and further out at Warrandyte and Warrandyte North, this causes major congestion in the morning and afternoon of each and every day.
I was delighted, therefore, to be able to announce, along with the Prime Minister and the Minister for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population, last week, a $10 million fund to ease traffic congestion on the corridor between Eltham and Templestowe. I was pleased over the last few months to be able to work with the Shire of Nillumbik and the City of Manningham, which jointly identified this as a No. 1 project for the electorate. I was able to join with the minister, Alan Tudge, and the mayor of Nillumbik, Karen Egan, at one of the locations—one of the pinch points so far as this is concerned—last week. The two major pinch points are to the north of the river, at the northern end of Fitzsimons Lane, where that intersects with Main Road—this is a major congestion area every day—and then south of the river where Fitzsimons Lane intersects with Porter Street, Williamsons Road and other roads off there, which is another major intersection that is a major congestion point in the electorate. This $10 million will go a long way towards helping to ease the congestion on both sides of the Yarra River.