WORK on four bridges between Warrnambool and Port Fairy are among a string of projects the federal government has announced will begin on the Princes Highway before the year's end.
Wannon MP Dan Tehan said the bridge works at Rosebrook, Dennington and Port Fairy north would be the first works to start after he committed $60 million for that stretch of road last year.
"This is very much the start," Mr Tehan said. "We are going to see some shovels in the ground."
Twelve projects are set to begin between Camperdown and Tyrendarra, including overtaking lanes, asphalt surfacing and intersection strengthening, and bridge upgrades at locations such as the Warrnambool train line at Allansford and Weerite, and the Glenelg River at Dartmoor.
He said the "blue church" intersection, west of Colac, would receive more than $9 million in works, with the intersection "widened" and the approaches "vastly improved".
"That intersection is one of the most dangerous on the whole of the Princes Highway, and desperately needs fixing and that's obviously why it has been given priority," Mr Tehan said.
He said work would also ramp up on upgrades to the Henty Highway, Portland-Nelson Road and Portland-Casterton Road, using $80 million announced last year.
Mr Tehan said the projects due to start "this quarter" on the Princes Highway cost $55 million, but came from "three buckets of money" announced last year.
"It's coming out of the $60 million for Warrnambool to Port Fairy, it's coming out of the $80 million for the Green Triangle roads of strategic importance, and also an additional bucket of money that was allocated for the Prince Highway west corridor," Mr Tehan said.
He said it would be up to the state government to apply for additional funding for the Princes Highway in this year's federal budget, with no new funds otherwise allocated for the highway.
Mr Tehan said the new 2020 to 2021 budget included $2 billion for road safety upgrades nationally that the federal government was offering to the states on a "use-it-or-lose-it basis".
"My plea is to put the proposals in. The money is there, we want to partner with you. When it comes to your roads you have to do that work," he said.
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