The $6.7 billion West Gate Tunnel Project will change the way people move around Melbourne and how trucks get to the port. It will give Melbourne a much-needed major second river crossing and provide an alternative route from the West Gate Freeway to the CBD. The project will slash congestion and travel times, take trucks off residential roads in the inner west and create 6,000 jobs.

The project will include:

West Gate Freeway: upgrading and widening the freeway from 8 to 12 lanes. New express lanes between the M80 and the West Gate Bridge will reduce weaving and merging that currently leads to traffic congestion.

A new tunnel from the West Gate Freeway to the Maribyrnong River will take motorists and trucks underground and off residential streets. The biggest tunnel boring machines in the southern hemisphere will be used for this tunnel.

Port to city: a new bridge over the Maribyrnong River and an elevated road along Footscray Road will provide direct links to the Port of Melbourne, CityLink and an extended Wurundjeri Way.
AECOM was engaged by Transurban as Technical Advisor and Environmental Planning and Approvals Advisor to assist in the Project Development phase and at each stage of the market-led proposal. This has involved:

Stage One: Preliminary assessment of ideas and proposals.

  • Providing planning and design advice to assist in the development of the market-led proposal.

Stage Two: Strategic assessment and recommendation.

  • Design options development and multi criteria assessment.
  • Planning and strategic assessment advice to inform the proposed planning process.

Stage Three: Detailed due diligence, investment case and procurement advice.

  • Development of the Concept Design.
  • Inputs into the investment case and traffic modelling.
  • Freight and logistics advice.
  • Community engagement.

Stage Four: Negotiation and assessment of final offer.

Assisted Transurban in engaging with key stakeholders including the Port of Melbourne, local councils, utility asset owners, accredited rail operators and planning authorities.

Inputs into the project scope agreement requirements with the Victorian Government and Transurban, establishing connections, ramp locations, portal locations and land constraints.

  • Assisted with development of the Reference Design. The scope of this work included:
    • Road alignment
    • Bridge general arrangements
    • Tunnel space-proofing
    • Noise modelling
    • Flood modelling and portal flood immunity advice
    • Fire and life safety advice.
  • Preparation of tender documentation.
  • Participation in Interactive Tender Workshops with each of the Shortlisted Respondents (tenderers).
  • Facilitated meetings between stakeholders and shortlisted respondents.
  • Preparation of the Impact Assessments and supporting the Victorian Government’s preparation of the Environment Effects Statement for the Reference Design.

Stage Five: Award contract.

  • Assisted the evaluation of the three tender submissions, with Financial Close occurring in December 2017.

Construction commenced on the West Gate Tunnel Project in January 2018 and the tunnel will be open to traffic in 2022.