9 December 2014
GOVERNMENT YET TO COMMIT TO CRUCIAL INTERCHANGE LINK
THE Federal Government is yet to commit money to build the O’Herns Rd/Hume Freeway interchange.
The project, a key plank of the Access Denied campaign, requires $35 million in Federal Government money to proceed after the Labor State Government promised a $40.7 million contribution.
The interchange will create access ramps connecting O’Herns Rd with the Hume Freeway and duplicate a 1.4km section of O’Herns Rd to reduce congestion on roads across Epping and Epping North.
Whittlesea Council will contribute $10 million-plus, mostly comprising money from developer contributions.
When asked if Access Denied campaigners could expect Federal money for the project, Patron Senator for Scullin and Liberal MP Michael Ronaldson said his government was yet to make a commitment. “There is currently no Australian Government commitment to the project,’’ Mr Ronaldson said.
“Funding for the project would need to be considered in the context of future investment programs and be negotiated between the Victorian and Australian governments.”
City of Whittlesea director advocacy and communications Griff Davis said the council was in the process of confirming with the new Labor State Government when money would be made available.
“We also need to determine the scope of the works being funded by the new State Government,” Mr Davis said.
“Once we receive a letter of confirmation and a detailed scope of works, we can then approach the Federal Government to provide their share of the funding.”
Scullin federal Labor MP Andrew Giles did not respond before the Whittlesea Leader’s deadline.