Funding divide over Ballarat Link Road

·2-min read

A rapidly growing Victorian city could get $60 million for a road link the mayor and Liberals believe is needed. But the Labor government says it isn't a priority.

The second stage of the road would create a north-south link in Ballarat's biggest urban growth area, connecting the city centre with major regional highways.

Victorian roads minister Ben Carroll said additional work was not urgent.

"We've listened to the local community and we've heard loud and clear that Ballarat Link Road Stage 2 is not a priority," Mr Carroll said.

"We've invested over $4.7 billion on building and upgrading regional roads since 2015 and will continue to work with local communities to ease congestion and deliver safer journeys."

However, Ballarat Mayor Daniel Moloney is at odds with the roads minister.

"Delivery of the next stages of Ballarat Link Road, including the duplication of Dyson Drive, is a long-term priority project for the City of Ballarat," Mr Moloney said.

Victorian Liberal leader Matthew Guy said fixing and rebuilding regional roads would be a major priority if he was elected in November, promising $60 million over the next four years to the project.

"This project is so important for Ballarat's growth. It's Victoria's third largest city," Mr Guy told reporters.

Regional Development Victoria has projected Ballarat's population to grow by almost 25 per cent over the next 14 years, with the Liberals and Nationals saying the city's traffic had increased by 60 per cent over the past five years.

"This road has been promised and promised and promised by the Labor Party, and nothing's happened," Mr Guy said.

"They've had eight years to get on with it."

The first stage of the road was completed in 2018.

Mr Moloney said he hoped to see this funding commitment matched by all sides of politics to ensure its timely completion.

Labor said it was investing in Ballarat's road network, including $60.8 million to upgrade key intersections across the city.