The East-West Link road tunnel is still being promoted by the Victorian government as a centrepiece of its soon-to-be released transport plan, despite majority support for public transport alternatives.
A review of submissions to the government-commissioned East West Link Needs Assessment report published in March, issued on November 20 by Victorian Greens MP Colleen Hartland, reveals that of the 2149 submissions, 1699 opposed the tunnel and only 171 supported it (most of the latter were corporate submissions).
A few days after the Greens' announcement, the Age newspaper published an opinion poll in which 68% of those surveyed wanted money spent on public transport rather than roads.
The government seems determined to press ahead regardless, but in an attempt to take some of the heat out of the public debate, all mention of the second and third stages of the tunnel seems to have died away.
Nevertheless, the tunnel only makes any sense if all three stages are completed, which would result in the destruction of more than 1000 homes, and public parks in Parkville and Kensington.