A clearer picture is emerging of the active transport improvements that will be delivered as part of the North East Link road project.
The State Government announced this week that it had finalised the design of North East Link (NELP), deciding to extend the twin tunnels an extra 1.9km to the north to Watsonia with the use of tunnel boring machines.
This change enables a 6.5km tunnel that will simplify interchanges create more space for a tree-lined Greensborough Road boulevard with 700 new trees and wide, shaded walking and cycling paths.
NELP has added an extra nine kilometres of trail to create 34 kilometres of walking and cycling paths linking the north east to Yarra River trails and parklands.
There are three new parklands and wetlands with a new cultural precinct along the banks of Birrarung (Yarra River) in Bulleen, new Koonung Creek wetlands in Balwyn North and a new community park along Banyule Creek in Yallambie – all linked to the new North East Trail.
The project also released a series of artists impressions of the new bike infrastructure.
The Greensborough Road Path is described as an entirely off-road path with five new bridges from Greensborough to Rosanna linking the Ring Road Trail to Watsonia Station and shops and Yarra River parklands.
Improved Yarra links Yarra include better, safer connections to the Main Yarra Trail, parklands, schools, sports clubs and grounds in Bulleen, Heide Museum of Modern Art and the new cultural precinct wetlands.
And still a highlight is the new four kilometre bicycle superhighway stretching across the Yarra River from Burke Road to Merri Creek Trail and the inner city cycle network.
There are also connections to rapid bus services on the new Eastern Express busway, with parking for bikes, and every bridge upgraded from Springvale Road to Bulleen Road.
In all 8 main trails linked in Melbourne’s north and east, forming 100km of continuous trail around Melbourne.
Work on the main aspects of the project will start next year after further public consultation and planning.
The North East Trail will be built in sections as part of the work for the North East Link Tunnels, Ring Road Completion and Eastern Freeway Upgrades.
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