The end to roadworks at the Hume Freeway’s McKoy Street intersection will not mean the end of slower speeds: VicRoads have confirmed the 80km/h zone will be in place 24 hours per day.
Cars will be able to use the newly-designed Wodonga intersection when it opens Friday afternoon about 3pm.
Regional Roads Victoria, the new country division of VicRoads, want to trial a fixed slower speed limit over the one-kilometre stretch during the coming months.
RRV North Eastern regional director Nicki Kyriakou said the evaluation period was needed to assess the impact of a new 24-hour United petrol station on McKoy Street.
“This is an area that already experiences conflict from local traffic entering and exiting a high-volume freeway environment,” she said.
“When the service station development was first proposed in 2017, we objected because of the increased traffic movements it would bring to this key intersection 24 hours a day.”
Traffic volumes are expected to increase in the area when the service station opens.
Ms Kyriakou said the 80km/h zone between 7am and 7pm had resulted in “improved safety and with minimal impacts on travel times” since it was introduced in 2015.
“Our modelling suggests that the extension of this speed zone to all hours will add only 15 seconds to journey times,” she said.
Benambra MP Bill Tilley said he still had serious concerns about the freeway modifications which were about to open to the public.
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“Engineers continue to contact this office saying that the current design is unsafe and has the potential for a serious accident,” he said.
“I would urge everyone who uses this intersection to take great care until such time as a safer solution is realised and that needs to be a graded separation sooner rather than later.
“I think everyone agreed that this can’t remain 80 km/h forever.
“Almost 30,000 vehicles use this road everyday, its a disaster waiting to happen.”
RRV has committed to consulting the community on the fixed 80km/h zone trial before the end of the year.
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