201403.20

New Penlink location and tourist directional signs in sight

Local Federal MP, Bruce Billson, said his efforts to improve locational and tourist directional signage along the Peninsula Link have taken another positive step forward following a recent workshop involving key stakeholders and road authorities where a work program was agreed.

Mr Billson highlighted how the benefits from the new freeway built after years of advocacy were not being fully realised due to inadequate signage for local motorists and visitors.

The Coalition made an election funding commitment of $175,000 and to collaborate with local Council, road authorities, tourist agencies and the local community on the implementation of an agreed plan to address the Peninsula Link signage problems.

Ensuring the local and visitor traffic can effectively use this key piece of regional infrastructure is crucial to getting value for money and reaping the benefits of PenLink.

The only way to achieve this is to invest in better locational and tourist directional signage including addressing the ‘Bermuda Triangle’ of Baxter and Western Port ‘blind spot’ which are both invisible according to current signage.

This is the perfect example of how better locational signage will improve driver certainty, traffic flow and community identification.

The lack of ‘brown’ tourist directional and ‘blue’ icon and service signage undermines the important economic contribution we will be able to fully realise when visitors are informed about regionally-significant visitor destinations, experiences available and services we offer and how best to find them.

Promoting visitor experiences and local attractions available via specific exits will improve the presentation, awareness and access to key attractions and areas of activity for motorists using this freeway link into our region.

Making sure the primary strategic signage on PenLink interacts effectively with secondary signage on key arterial roads and the tertiary ‘finger boards’ was part of the collaborative work which was advanced at our highly productive roundtable.

Our work resulted in an agreed plan for specific signage to address the deficiencies on PenLink, its intersection with EastLink and Frankston Freeway, in a way that best supports the Mornington Peninsula Regional Tourism Board’s Destination Management Plan and findings from the regional visitation survey.

With so many interests, stakeholders and authorities involved, we haven’t peaked early on resolving this matter but new and improved PenLink location and tourist directional signage is finally in sight.

Mr Billson thanked the representatives from VicRoads, Mornington Peninsula Shire Council, Frankston City Council, the PenLink and EastLink operators, Linking Melbourne Authority, local chambers of commerce, Tourism Victoria and the regional tourism board for their constructive and collaborative approach to this matter of significant community and economic concern.

A plan detailing specific signage improvements will be submitted to VicRoads for formal endorsement so work can start as soon as possible after 1 July when the $175,000 funding commitment secured by Mr Billson becomes available.