VicRoads workers learned of Ballarat plan on TV news

MELBOURNE VicRoads employees are in shock after learning from TV news bulletins their jobs were earmarked to relocate to Ballarat.

Australian Service Union Victoria branch secretary Lisa Darmanin said workers at the Kew-based headquarters were still reeling after hearing of the proposal on the Sunday evening news.

"We've sought urgent consultation with the Premier and VicRoads to explore what the Premier meant," Ms Darmanin said.

"People are facing seven months of uncertainty as they wait to see what the outcome of the election is."

Premier Denis Napthine announced the relocation of the headquarters, if the state government was re-elected in November's state poll, in a visit to Ballarat on Sunday. He said the headquarters would be constructed on Armstrong Street North, adjacent to the Civic Hall.

Ballarat's CBD traders united behind the idea today.

Mitchell Harris Wine Bar owner and director Alicia Mitchell said a potential pool of 400 people could only benefit business and the wider development of the CBD.

"The fact they're finally making some direction with the site, it gives you the ability to further plan your business," Ms Mitchell said.

"There's catering opportunities, functions and events, the after-work aspect as well. It'll help put more foot traffic and more people through the precinct."

The fact they're finally making some direction with the site, it gives you the ability to further plan your business. - Alicia Mitchell, Mitchell Harris Wine Bar

Cycle City manager Andrew Watson spoke of the potential flow-on effects to the community, but hoped the proposal would also create employment opportunities for Ballarat locals.

Labor leader Daniel Andrews told media today the ALP would also have a close look at the move.

But he said the premier's announcement yesterday was still little more than a "media release".

"We'll have to have a very close look at the announcement that was made yesterday," he said

"That will take some time based on the fact there's no budget, there's no costings, there's no timeline, there's no information about the 600 staff who are in Kew that are not being relocated, where they'll work from."