First section of Princes Highway West duplication opens six months early

Section 1 of the Princes Highway duplication between Winchelsea and Colac has opened to traffic more than six months ahead of schedule.

Acting Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Michael McCormack said the 11.5-kilometre section was the first to be completed since work first began on the duplication project in mid-2016.

“This marks fantastic progress on the Princes Highway duplication, with drivers now able to enjoy four lanes of the upgraded highway from Deans Marsh Road, Winchelsea, to west of Armytage Road,” Mr McCormack said.

Victorian Minister for Roads and Road Safety Luke Donnellan said the upgrade would give drivers a smoother journey and ensure the road caters to the 9,000 vehicles, including 1,550 heavy trucks, that use it each day.

“This upgrade is something the community has been crying out for so it is great to see this first section open ahead of schedule,” Mr Donnellan said.

Federal Member for Corangamite Sarah Henderson said some minor works on the section still need to be completed.

“Things such as linemarking and barrier installation are still finishing up so I urge drivers to obey the signed speed limits and follow the advice of traffic management onsite,” Ms Henderson said.

Member for Western Victoria Gayle Tierney said the upgrade will improve safety by separating eastbound and westbound traffic and give drivers better opportunbities to overtake.

“It’s great to see this work finished ahead of schedule and with work underway on sections the sections between Armytage and Warncoort and from Warncoort to Colac—our community can lookforward to a safer, more relieable drive between Winchelsea and Colac.”

The $363.5 million Winchelsea to Colac Duplication project is being jointly funded by the Australian and Victorian governments.

The full duplication between Winchelsea and Colac is expected to be completed by mid--2019.