A 12-YEAR priority for the Panmure community will be realised with the state government announcing $100,000 funding to improve pedestrian safety.
The Panmure Action Group yesterday welcomed the announcement from Minister for Roads and Public Transport Terry Mulder which will see the installation of a safety barrier separating Princes Highway traffic and pedestrians on the Mount Emu Creek bridge.
The project also includes the construction of a new off-road pathway on the eastern side of the bridge.
Panmure Action Group secretary Alison Wright said the funding was wonderful news given it had been an ongoing safety concern for a number of years.
“The Panmure Action Group executive committee met in April 2012 with Mr Mulder where he acknowledged the high volume of traffic and identified the need for improved safety conditions for pedestrians of Panmure,” she said.
“We wish to thank Moyne Shire Council and staff for their assistance and support in finally seeing this project commence.”
Group vice-president Anna Dillon said the bridge had been high on the priority list for the town for the past 12 years.
Mr Mulder said the project would improve safety and efficiency for cyclists and pedestrians travelling between the Panmure residential area on the west side of Mount Emu Creek to the township area on the east side.
“With heavy vehicles using the Princes Highway and crossing Mount Emu Creek bridge it is imperative that bicycle and pedestrian connectivity is improved for the Panmure community,” he said.
The Department of Transport is partnering with Moyne Shire Council to jointly fund the project.
Moyne Shire mayor Jim Doukas said the bicycle and pedestrian improvement works were a very important link for the Panmure community.
The work for Mount Emu Creek bridge will begin this year.
Member for South West Coast Denis Napthine said the current crossing along the bridge is a narrow and unguarded walkway along the side of the Princes Highway bridge, which many pedestrians can find frightening, especially when large B-doubles and semi-trailers roar across the bridge while they are crossing.
“Panmure is a growing community, with much of the growth and development taking place on the western side of Mount Emu Creek and on the southern side of the Princes Highway,” he said.
“These new safety upgrades will improve the important link between the growing residential area and the township of Panmure and increase safety for students walking or riding to school or residents going into town.”