WORK has started on a $50 million five-year upgrade program for the Great Ocean Road between Allansford and Torquay.
It includes bitumen resurfacing, bridge repairs, drainage and stabilisation to prevent landslips.
The extensive program follows high-level concerns the iconic road is crumbling under increasing loads of tourist traffic.
State and federal governments last year committed $25m each to help VicRoads undertake crucial repairs and upgrades.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott during his election campaign last August described the road as “desperately busy and congested”.
Yesterday, VicRoads regional director William Tieppo said extensive testing had been carried out to determine upgrade priorities for what he described as a challenging project.
“We are committed to ensuring future generations are able to continue to visit this nationally historic attraction by ensuring the road remains safe and reliable for locals and the millions of visitors each year,” he said.
“We will be working with the community and stakeholders to minimise impacts wherever possible and will program works to avoid peak holiday times however, some inconvenience should be expected.”
He warned of speed restrictions and lane closures to ensure safety of workers and drivers.
Work started last week on the road section between Bellbrae and Anglesea and will shift towards the Allansford end later in the year.
Road resurfacing is also scheduled for Allansford and Lorne, bridge upgrades at Separation Creek, Boggaley Creek and Grey River, landslip work around Lorne and drainage replacement at Wye River.
More details are available on the VicRoads website and a phone app which provides live traffic information.