The Government of Victoria in Australia has opened the Patterson River bridge to traffic as part of a A$588m ($427.36m) project.

With the opening of this bridge, residents of Carrum and Bonbeach will be able to drive along Station Street without requiring them to detour onto the Nepean Highway.

The project includes three level crossing removals, the revitalisation of Carrum village, and a new beach promenade to ensure safer travel for drivers, cyclists, and pedestrians.

Patterson River bridge has two lanes open now, with a dedicated bike lane and a shared walking and cycling path opening later in the year. It is expected to reduce travel times in the area.

“Construction in and around Carrum and Bonbeach is part of the government’s A$2bn ($1.45bn) investment on the Frankston line, which includes 13 level crossings being removed.”

Construction and landscaping will continue until early 2019. Construction of the bridge commenced earlier this year when an 18.5m barge was towed 30nm from Queenscliff.

A 250t crane was placed on the barge and has been used from the initial piling work to lifting the final beams onto the bridge.

Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews said: “We promised Carrum and Bonbeach locals we’d build them a second road bridge and we’ve got it done, ahead of schedule. This new bridge will slash travel times to get people where they need to be sooner. Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.

“This is part of our record investment to remove 50 dangerous and congested level crossings across Melbourne and give people on the Frankston line the world-class transport they deserve.”

Preliminary works in Carrum started last month.

Construction in and around Carrum and Bonbeach is part of the government’s A$2bn ($1.45bn) investment on the Frankston line, which includes 13 level crossings being removed in addition to construction of ten new stations.