The Victorian Government will crack down on construction companies that block inner-city roads and cause traffic congestions with a new Road Occupation Charge.
Private companies will pay a Road Occupation Charge to use inner-city arterial roads as part of building works or other activities from Wednesday 1 April 2020.
The new charge extends charging agreements between local governments and developer who set up construction equipment, scaffolding or worksites in traffic lanes to cover arterial roads as well.
It aims to reduce blockages created by private bodies that delay pedestrians, cyclists and public transport users. It will not apply to people temporarily occupying a road while moving to a new house or renovating.
The scheme will apply to inner city roads across 121 suburbs, from Beaumaris, to Balwyn North, Glenroy and Kingsville.
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“Private construction companies blocking lanes on our arterial roads keeps Victorians in their cars even longer on their daily commute and has a serious impact on our economy,” said Roads and Road Safety Minister Jaala Pulford.
“We know how frustrating it is when construction clogs up important road space – the change will keep drivers moving, getting home sooner, everyday.”
It follows a trial across Melbourne in 2018, which saw a reduction in the length of road occupation by up to 75 per cent.
During the trial, one construction company reduced their occupation of a busy Melbourne intersection from 92 days to one day.
Traffic volumes in Melbourne have grown by 20 per cent in the past 10 years, with 13 million trips taken each day across all forms of transport. The Victorian Department of Transport estimates this figure will increase to 23 million by 2050.
The Department of Transport will monitor the network to ensure companies are complying with the Road Occupation Charge, with all revenue collected to be re-invested into congestion reduction initiatives.