Maree Edwards faces the media at the announcement. Photo: ANDREW PERRYMAN


BENDIGO has missed out on being the centre for VicRoads new regional roads division but Bendigo West MP Maree Edwards announced yesterday more than $26 million in road funding to upgrade arterial roads used by traffic to get in and out of the city.

Ms Edwards said VicRoads’ significant presence in Ballarat made it the natural choice to headquarter the Regional Road Victoria division which will administer $941 million in regional road funding that is part of the state budget.

But she said there will be officers located in other centres, including Bendigo.

Attracting upgrade funding in central Victoria was the Calder Highway between Bendigo and Mildura, a total of $19 million that will build new overtaking lanes, roundabouts and rest areas as well as resurface parts of the 400-kilometre route.

The funding does not include planning for a bypass around Marong which has been the persistent wish of local residents.

Marong sits on the freight route from the north into Melbourne.

Another road to get funding is McIvor Highway between Harley and Bennett streets, $3.5m to upgrade the increasingly congested commuter link into Bendigo.

Another $3.5m will secure improvement work for the Bendigo to Redesdale Road.

Ms Edwards said another $100m was also available to local governments who could apply to fix local roads.