South of Watsonia, connecting to Eastlink
The North East Link (NEL) is being built in Banyule in two sections. The Central package works are being undertaken south of Watsonia and the Northern package works will extend from Watsonia to the M80 Ring Road in Greensborough.
In late 2019, NELP appointed CPB Contractors to undertake early works for the project. The works primarily included service relocations, which were completed during 2020 and 2021.
In 2021, Spark was announced as the preferred bidder to design and construct the Central Package works that extend from Watsonia (Banyule) to Bulleen (Manningham) and undertake tunnelling works.
From 11 to 31 May 2022, the Urban Design Landscape Plan (UDLP) for the North East Link Tunnels was available for public comment. The UDLP detailed the project design that was developed by SPARK based on the original Project Reference Design developed by NELP.
Key elements of the UDLP include:
- North East Link Tunnels
- A modified Lower Plenty Road traffic interchange
- Greensborough Boulevard (currently Greensborough Road)
- Borlase Reserve parklands
- Tunnel ventilation structure at Simpson Army Barracks
- The North East Shared User path through Watsonia, Macleod, Yallambie and Rosanna
Banyule provided a submission regarding the UDLP on behalf of residents. This was endorsed by Council on 27 June 2022.The UDLP was then updated by SPARK and submitted to the Minister for Planning for approval. Approval is expected in early 2023.
In 2022, SPARK undertook significant site preparation along the east side of Greensborough Road including significant vegetation removal and setup of construction compounds and equipment. Interim road alignment changes were started with the realignment of Greensborough Road and new compound entrances.
SPARK will continue to make interim road changes along Greensborough Road to facilitate the project in 2023 including cyclist and pedestrian detours, intersections and traffic signals to control access to site compounds.
Tunneling is expected to commence in 2024.
We continue to advocate on behalf of Banyule's residents, businesses and the community as the works for the North East Link progress.