10 July 2016

The Western Distributor is entering the next phase of planning and consultation with the release of an updated design and the latest information about planning for the project now available.

Read more in the Victorian Government’s media release.

During April and May 2016, we asked communities, councils and industry for feedback on the Western Distributor Concept design and other key topics. The feedback has informed the project’s development, including:

  • the updated design, called a Reference design
  • requirements for construction tenderers, including urban design guidance
  • impact assessments for the project’s EES.

Detailed information about the consultation process, what we heard and how we are using this feedback is available in the Western Distributor Consultation Report September 2015 – May 2016 and in the Reference design and consultation update brochure July 2016 (PDF 1 MB).

The Reference design

The Reference design for the $5.5 billion Western Distributor includes twin tunnels under Yarraville up to 3 kilometres long, with the southern entry portals in the middle of the West Gate Freeway to minimise loss of open space.

The design includes ramps as close as possible to either side of the West Gate Freeway for a connection to Hyde Street for dangerous goods trucks that can’t use the tunnel, keeping them away from houses and community facilities.

The Reference design has been determined following exhaustive consultation with local councils, community and industry by the Victorian Government and Transurban.

The consultation revealed a preference for a design that takes trucks off local streets, keeps construction within the existing freeway reserve and industrial land, and minimises construction impacts on residents, businesses, open space and road users.

Get to know the Reference design on our interactive map.

What happens next?

Between now until early 2017, work will be carried out on the competitive tender process and preparation of impact assessments as part of the Environment Effects Statement (EES).

  • Competitive tender process gets underway
    The tenderers have until later this year to respond and explain in detail how they would design and construct the project and how much it would cost, using the Reference design and other requirements as a base. Find out more about this process
  • Specialist studies begin
    Over the coming months, 17 specialist studies will be undertaken to assess the environmental, social and economic effects of the project (impact assessments) and reported on in the project’s EES. Find out more about this process in EES specialist studies. Later this year, tenderers proposals will be submitted and if there are changes to the Reference design, these will be incorporated into the EES. You will be able to view and provide feedback on the EES early to mid 2017.
  • Get to know your local representative
    The Western Distributor Community Liaison Group (CLG) regularly meets to exchange views and information about local topics that are important to the community. Learn more about the CLG members and get in touch with them to ensure your views are represented.

We have been talking about the Western Distributor’s design, planning and assessment with interested communities, councils and industry for more than 12 months. We have received lots of useful feedback and will continue the conversation as part of the project’s development.

We’re touring the west – come and visit us

We’re holding pop-up sessions along the project corridor so that you can drop-in at a time that suits you, meet the project team and speak with the specialists to learn more about the Reference design and the next steps in the Western Distributor’s planning and development. We look forward to seeing you there.