To build the West Gate Tunnel, approximately 1.5 million cubic meters of rock and soil will need to be removed.

Digging up this amount of soil to build the West Gate Tunnels will be a 24/7 operation at our Northern Portal site in Yarraville.

The project parties are working to find a long-term solution to safely manage the rock and soil created during tunnelling. This includes finding a permanent disposal site, and having a potential temporary back-up holding site to be used only when the permanent site can’t be accessed.

Given the West Gate Tunnel Project is being built in former industrial areas, our extensive testing has found low levels of the group of chemicals known as PFAS will be found in some of the excavated soil during tunnelling.

To ensure it is managed safely for workers and the community, EPA Victoria and Worksafe Victoria requirements will be met at every step of the way.

Key information

. Expected PFAS levels

Soil management potential sites

Transurban's builder CPB John Holland is running a tender process to choose a site for the safe disposal of the soil from tunnelling.

Before any facility can be used to safely manage tunnel soil for the project, which is expected to contain low levels of PFAS, a rigorous approvals process is in place to ensure the community and environment is protected every step of the way. This requires any site that has put forward a proposal to obtain the relevant environment and planning approvals, before any site can start receiving tunnel soil.

Process to finalise tunnel soil handling facilities

Illustration of process soil management sites are required to follow to see approval

Proposed sites



Soil management site


Soil management proposal


Planning & environmental approvals

Maddingley Brown Coal, Bacchus Marsh Read proposal

See EPA environmental approval
See planning approval

Hi-Quality, Sunbury Read proposalSee EPA environmental approval
Cleanaway, Ravenhall Read proposal See EPA environmental approval
See planning approval 

A site is also being investigated in Wyndham Vale as a potential temporary back-up site if it is needed.

This page will be updated as more information becomes available.