Western Link Road section to be completed next summer

Negotiations and planning are still ongoing for the second section of the first stage of the Ballarat Western Link Road. 

The project has been plagued with delays after it was discovered the project might  impact on indigenous sacred sites.

In January, Premier Denis Napthine announced tenders were open to build a 1.7 kilometre stage of the road, despite stage one of the original promised project being 4.2km in length.

City of Ballarat chief executive Anthony Schinck said the 2.5-kilometre section of the road would be constructed when an alignment was finalised. 

“The 1.7-kilometre section is expected to be completed next summer, subject to favourable weather conditions,” he said. 

“Progress has been made on finalising all statutory and planning approvals for the remaining 2.5-kilometre section of stage one. 

“The City of Ballarat is working with stakeholders, including the Wathaurung Aboriginal Corporation, to finalise the alternative alignment and planning activities taking into account all environmental and cultural issues and sensitive sites.” 

These negotiations have been taking place since a mediation agreement was made at the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal in November 2013.

It is expected an announcement regarding a contract being awarded for the 1.7-kilometre section will be announced in the near future. 

“Council will use the time available as tenders are let and construction for the first 1.7-kilometre section gets under way, to finalise all statutory and planning approvals for the remaining 2.5-kilometre section,” Mr Schinck said. 

This section is expected to link Learmonth Road and the Ballarat West Employment Zone and is one of region’s biggest projects.

matthew.dixon@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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