Friday 22nd Sep, 2017

Conflict likely as truck numbers predicted to surge on Port Melbourne roads

Westgate Bridge. Photo: John Holland
Westgate Bridge. Photo: John Holland

INCREASED truck traffic on Lorimer Street and Wurundjeri Way near Melbourne’s Docklands precinct is a recipe for conflict, an industry figure has warned.

Container Transport Alliance Australia director, Neil Chambers, spoke this week at the West Gate Tunnel Project Inquiry and Advisory Committee Public Hearing in Footscray.

Mr Chambers said weight restrictions for heavy vehicles on the West Gate Bridge would force ever larger vehicles closer to the city, with trucks moving in and out of Webb Dock via an extension to Wurundjeri Way and then across Charles Grimes Bridge.

“At the moment, with the movement of freight between Webb Dock and Swanson Dock, that is dozens of trucks a day but it will be hundreds of trucks a day and night on Lorimer Street in the future,” he said.

“Our concern is this sets us up for a conflict with the community that the transport industry, if recent outcomes are any guide, will lose.

“That is irrespective of whether the government declares these routes as freight routes.”

Mr Chambers also spoke of the necessity of access to the M1 freeway from Millers Road and Grieve Parade on the western side of the West Gate Bridge, criticising state government truck bans.

“To restrict access on Millers Road is a joke,” he said.

“In fact, in our view, Millers Road must be upgraded to a standard that can handle higher weights and also accommodate these heavy vehicle types safely and productively.”

Mr Chambers said this should include a widening and a strengthening of the road and truck-only lanes in key locations.

“You can’t have a vehicle, upwards of eighty to one hundred tonnes, stopping and starting at a roundabout.”

Send this to friend