Mount Dandenong Tourist Road-Montrose Road-Swansea Road, Montrose: safety

My adjournment matter is for the Minister for Roads, and the action I seek is for the minister to reconsider the funding allocated for the construction of a signalised intersection to replace the Montrose roundabout. This is a vital issue of safety and amenity for the residents of Montrose. The interesting thing about this project is that there is bipartisan agreement that something needs to be done. The member for Kilsyth and I both represent Montrose residents, and it is an issue we are both well aware of. Last year the Montrose Township Group circulated a survey regarding the problems at the intersection, and the response to that survey was overwhelming. It is absolutely clear that Montrose residents are strongly in favour of replacing the roundabout with traffic lights.

Montrose roundabout is seriously flawed.

Firstly, there are significant delays during peak hour; detector loops were installed to try to alleviate congestion but it is fair to say that they have not led to any significant improvements. Secondly, every day there are very near misses and instances of dangerous driving. To that end both Labor and the coalition made commitments to replace the roundabout with a fully signalised intersection. This is where the similarities end.

The Liberal Party committed a paltry $800 000 for this project. Apparently $800 000 will be sufficient to provide traffic lights at the Mount Dandenong Tourist Road, Montrose Road and Swansea Road intersection. On the other hand Labor committed what it would truly cost to deliver this project — $3.5 million — which involves traffic lights and pedestrian safety improvements. VicRoads knows that $800 000 is not enough. The Yarra Ranges council knows $800 000 is not enough. Most importantly, the Montrose Township Group and the community know $800 000 is not enough.

The action I seek from the minister is that the government provide the funding to deliver this project in full. This is what it promised. To quote from the coalition’s media release of 10 November 2010, it committed to ‘build traffic lights’ not ‘contribute to traffic lights’, and that is my request to the Minister for Roads.

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