THE Victorian Government last week called on experienced companies to express their interest to build the $110 million Chandler Highway Upgrade.
The upgrade will widen the highway to six lanes, include a new bridge to the west of the existing Chandler Highway bridge, upgrade the intersection at Heidelberg Road, install new traffic lights at the Yarra Boulevard intersection and improve cycling and pedestrian paths.
Chandler Highway currently carries an average of 44,000 vehicles per day and connects the northern growth area to Melbourne's inner east and south. It currently has four traffic lanes, with two in each direction. These lanes reduce to two, with one in each direction, at the bridge over the Yarra River.
The Victorian Government is also seeking feedback from the community on aspects of the design and future use of the bridge as well as other potential uses such as a park, playground, viewing platform or community garden.
The historic 124-year-old bridge will be converted to a shared path for cyclists and pedestrians as well as an open space for Melburnians. A second open space will be established underneath the existing and future Chandler Highway Bridge.
Community gardens, parks, playgrounds and an open space inspired by New York's famous High Line are among the ideas to transform the Chandler Highway Bridge into an urban oasis.
Feedback from residents will be incorporated into the detailed design of the project and will be finalised as part of the tender process.
Construction of the Chandler Highway Upgrade is expected to begin in mid-2017 and be completed by late 2018.