Road funding cut by 27% for north-west suburbs

VicRoads funding for roads in Melbourne’s north-west has been cut by more than $40 million, according to figures released by the state opposition.

The figures, based on VicRoads documents, show that across the state, $160 million less was allocated in VicRoads’ 2012-13 funding than in 2011-12.

In the metro north-west region, which includes Brimbank and Melton, funding dropped by 27 per cent – from $149 million in 2011-12 to $108 million in 2012-13. The region, which covers 14 municipalities, includes four growth area councils.

In August, Auditor-General John Doyle criticised successive state governments and VicRoads for failing to provide adequate funding for transport and roads in growth areas.

Opposition leader Daniel Andrews said the funding cuts were responsible for roads falling into disrepair, creating a safety hazard for motorists.

Melton Labor MP Don Nardella said the $40 million cut from the north-west region could be well spent in Melton. “They could build a bridge over Kororoit Creek to safeguard families from more deaths on the Melton Highway. The lights at Ferris Road still haven’t been done. They are saying it will start next year, but there’s still been lots of accidents there and it needs action now.’’

Mr Nardella said work was also needed on the Western Freeway, notably on a bump on the road between Ferris and Coburns roads heading to Melbourne.

VicRoads metro north-west regional director Patricia Liew said the utility couldn’t comment on the figures as it was unclear how they had been calculated.

“In 2013-14, we are spending $466 million on road maintenance,” she said. “The targeted road repair and restoration program will ensure that the life of these roads is extended for decades.’’

She said in the north-west, safety improvements would be carried out at intersections including Sunshine Avenue and St Albans Road.

The state opposition has set up a website – – to allow residents to nominate dangerous roads that need fixing.

Roads Minister Terry Mulder did not respond to requests for comment.