Roadworks causing traffic nightmare


Max Hatzoglou

Residents in the west are fed up with the increased traffic in the area due to the West Gate Tunnel Project, with residential side streets now banked up at peak hour times.

The West Gate Tunnel Project will seek to ease congestion on the West Gate Bridge and West Gate Freeway, and reduce the number of trucks on residential streets.

However, because of the project there have been a variety of major road closures, including 24/7 M80 ramp closures in Sunshine West, Williamstown Road and Princes Freeway and Geelong Road ramp closures.

In a bid to avoid the congestion, motorists have started using residential streets as shortcuts.

This led to the closure of Fairbairn Rd in Sunshine West in the industrial estate as detours led to cars using local streets and jamming them with traffic.

Brooklyn resident Tammie Cunningham said the roads around her house have been dangerously busy.

“Two cars have been hit and one dog was almost hit as a car drove around my car which was parked,” she said.

“The dog park is usually busy at these times and people who live around the area cannot get in their street let alone their houses.”

Ms Cunningham witnessed a car accident on her street after a resident was turning into his driveway and a car came flying down the bike lane to get around the traffic. The front of the vehicle was severely damaged.

“I know this is difficult but someone or something is going to get hurt eventually, [it’s] better to fix it before,” she said.

Altona resident Hussien Khodr has also had a close call because of the increased traffic.

“On the intersection between Marigold Avenue and Millers Road near Altona Grate, people start blocking people off and forget the road rules, which almost made me get into a car accident,” he said.

“It’s been like this for a month now and it’s starting to get frustrating.”

A West Gate Tunnel Project spokesperson said while they understand disruptions are frustrating, “on a project of this scale some impacts are unavoidable.”

“Over the summer works campaign, the West Gate Tunnel Project’s traffic teams work with the Department of Transport to continually monitor the traffic flow on the West Gate Freeway and across detour routes, making required adjustments where necessary to balance both traffic being detoured off the freeway and local roads,” the spokesperson said.