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The Federal Government announces it will fund $2.1 billion worth of transport infrastructure in Victoria, to help cater for the state's growing population, with the marginal seat of Corangamite to benefit.
The package in tomorrow's budget includes $1.1 billion to upgrade 13 arterial roads in Melbourne's north and south-eastern suburbs.
The upgrades will come in the form of extra lanes added to a number roads, as well as surface improvements in Langwarrin South and a new bridge over a rail line in Dandenong South.
Another $300 million will go towards sealing approximately 1,600 kilometres of unsealed roads in the Dandenong Ranges area, which the Government said would ease congestion and improve fire safety.
Liberal MP Jason Wood is vulnerable in the south-east suburban seat of La Trobe, where a number of the road upgrades are slated.
Mr Wood held the seat by a margin of 1.5 per cent after the 2016 election, but that edge has been improved by a redistribution to 3.5 per cent.
A further $700 million will help fund the South Geelong to Waurn Ponds rail upgrade — a joint federal and state government project in Victoria's most marginal seat of Corangamite.
Liberal MP Sarah Henderson holds the seat by just 0.03 per cent after the redistribution.
Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population Minister Alan Tudge said the $700 million would provide vital improvements to the rail line, which is currently at capacity.
"We already have $150 million invested in that project to get the work underway," he said.
"This will enable the entire track to be fully duplicated from South Geelong to Waurn Ponds.
"That track is already at capacity because it's a single line."
Last month, the Federal Government said it would invest $2 billion for a fast train service between Melbourne and Geelong if the Victorian Government matched that investment.
The announcement was dismissed by Victorian Transport Infrastructure Minister Jacinta Allan, who called it a "thought bubble" on the eve of a federal election.
She instead called on the Government to contribute to the more modest South Geelong to Waurn Ponds Rail duplication project.
High-speed rail in Australia
"If the Federal Government was fair dinkum about delivering faster rail to Geelong then they should immediately fund their share of the Waurn Ponds [rail] duplication project and get on board with our plan to build new tracks from Southern Cross to Wyndham Vale," she said.
"These are the precursor projects we need. We're planning these projects right now."
The funding adds to billions of dollars already promised by the Federal Government to infrastructure projects in Victoria, including $5 billion towards the Melbourne Airport Link.
This article first appeared on www.abc.net.au
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