Relieving Traffic Congestion in Melbourne, Australia

The Monash-CityLink-West Gate upgrade is an AUD $1.39 billion project that will improve safety and traffic flow along the busiest road corridor in Melbourne, Australia. Works will include widening sections of the road and introducing a new intelligent freeway management system that will improve traffic flows.

In March 2007 the Victorian State Government, through its road authority VicRoads, entered into an alliance agreement with four private sector partners to form the West Gate Freeway Alliance. The organisations are Baulderstone Hornibrook, Hyder Consulting, Parsons Brinckerhoff and Thiess.

The West Gate Freeway section of the upgrade will consist of works covering approximately 6km of freeway alignment and is scheduled for completion in mid-late 2010.

A central focus of the West Gate Freeway upgrade is to eliminate the merging and weaving patterns which cause traffic difficulties on sections of the freeway. To achieve this, new freeway lanes will be constructed alongside the existing elevated structure. The new lanes will separate traffic according to its destination, and are designed to lead to a safer and smoother journey for all freeway users.

The area of works where the E-Z Drill was used consisted of works on elevated structure above a dense commercial and residential area of Melbourne. Approximately 7000 holes were drilled as part of this section of works.

Working above public areas required a minimum of mess to be generated from the drilling process. Conventional diamond core drilling with water created slurry that was difficult to manage. The E-Z Drill avoided this issue as it uses a dry drilling process.

The E-Z Drill increased our hole drilling productivity on site by 300% compared to what we had originally forecast to achieve at the beginning of the project, meaning we are well on track to complete this major infrastructure upgrade.

(submitted by Tim Holmes, Stakeholder Relations Manager, West Gate Freeway Alliance)

Note: The E-Z Drill unit used on this project is a Model 210B-2 SRA modified to a 30” maximum drill depth. It also included E-Z Drill’s optional Macro Dust Collection System. The drill system was sold to the West Gate Alliance by E-Z Drill’s dealer in Australia, Ausran / Aran International Pty., Ltd., 3 Plaxtrol Crt., Alexandra Hills, Queensland, Australia. Contact Shane Dunstan, +617 3206 3782, or