Congestion busters in town

The Congestion Management Team will be funded under a $340 million package. 183809_06

The state government will deploy a congestion-busting team to three Melbourne traffic hot spots, including one in Wyndham, from this month.

Roads and Road Safety Minister Ben Carroll last week announced that a team of six expert traffic managers, named the Congestion Management Team, will respond to bottlenecks, incidents, and breakdowns on the Princes Highway in Werribee, Warrigal Road in Chadstone and Hallam North Road in the south-eastern suburbs.

The team will also identify small-scale changes which could improve traffic flow, such as extending turn lanes which cause queues and block through-lanes.

The Congestion Management Team will be funded under a $340 million package which includes 100 new jobs created to deal with increasing congestion as Melbourne emerges from the coronavirus pandemic.

The additional jobs include 12 new incident response service officers who will work in six response vans, to clear incidents quickly and get traffic moving.

Fourteen traffic signal engineer cadets will also begin a two-year training program.

“Getting more people in transport jobs means we can keep the city moving – the new dedicated Congestion Management Team will bust congestion on some of Melbourne’s busiest roads,” Mr Carroll said.

“These new resources add even more capability to this world-class team – we have the tools and people in place to tackle congestion and keep traffic flowing.”

The latest traffic volume data shows that as Melbourne emerges from the pandemic, travel patterns have shifted, with trips on arterial roads rapidly increasing compared with volumes on freeways.

In the second last week of April, traffic on the Princes Highway in Werribee was recorded at higher than 95 per cent of pre-COVID levels.