Bridge Strengthening on Donnybrook Road

22 March 2023

Lauren KATHAGE (Yan Yean) (19:12): (116)

My adjournment this evening is for the Minister for Roads and Road Safety. The action I seek is that the minister join me to inspect bridge-strengthening works at Barbers Creek on Donnybrook Road. This $1.6 million upgrade will create a safer and more reliable journey for road users, and while like many who use Donnybrook Road each day I took the temporary 60-kilometre speed limit as a chance to enjoy the scenery of the green wedge, I will be glad once the roadworks are completed shortly. I would like to thank the people and businesses of the surrounding communities for their patience while this vital work is undertaken. There are a lot of upgrades and maintenance works taking place in our community at the moment, and that is no surprise to me, but perhaps it is a surprise to the member for Benambra, considering the Labor government has more than doubled state investment in Victoria’s road network. In fact in 2022–23 we have invested $780 million in the state’s maintenance program, and $470 million of that will be spent in regional Victoria.

Since 2014 this government has invested $36 billion to upgrade our road network and deliver critical maintenance to ensure our roads are safer and more efficient. This is why we are busy upgrading Bridge Inn Road as part of Victoria’s Big Build. We are adding extra lanes, upgrading intersections and building a new bridge over Plenty River. When I visited the site recently I met Azize, an apprentice formworker. She had not set out to become a tradie. She had gotten a job in traffic management and through that learned of all the good jobs and training being made possible through the Big Build – 18,000 jobs have been created through the Big Build. When I caught up with Azize she proudly pointed out where she had contributed to the new Plenty River bridge foundations. The old Plenty River bridge is being turned into a shared walking and cycling path. It is the perfect location as paths from there lead directly to what will be the fully upgraded Plenty River Trail. This stunning trail will follow the Plenty River for 20 kilometres and reach all the way to Bundoora. You will be able to enjoy one of the five new lookouts on the way. The path will have multiple entry points from the surrounding suburbs, meaning the whole community will be able to enjoy a walk in nature and even bring their dogs along for a walk too. I am especially proud that this new trail will be suitable for all abilities from Bridge Inn Road to Hawkstowe precinct, meaning for people who have prams or who are wheelchair users it will free and easy to use that area. This is a great asset for our community, and I am looking forward to seeing work start.