The northbound off-ramp from the Eastern Distributor to Cleveland Street is currently closed between 6am and 10am and from 3pm to 7pm on weekdays.
The trial will close the off-ramp 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Congestion on the ramp frequently extends back onto the northbound lanes of the Eastern Distributor, causing obstruction to the through lanes. This often results in safety incidents and causes significant delays to northbound traffic in the morning peak.
In recent years there has been nearly a 10 per cent increase in traffic on the Eastern Distributor. Current traffic modelling has shown closing the Cleveland Street off ramp will result in reduced travel times during the morning and evening peak on the Eastern Distributor and on South Dowling Street.
The closure is expected to reduce the stopping and starting of merging traffic on the side ramps, helping to reduce frustration for motorists and residents by providing smoother, faster and safer trips for local traffic movements.
The trial will involve daily and weekly monitoring of travel times and journey reliability to validate the expected improvement in safety and journey times. Throughout the trial, motorists who wish to access Cleveland Street from the Eastern Distributor will need to exit earlier at the South Dowling Street or Link Road exits.
The trial has been planned to start in the July school holidays when traffic flows are lower so motorists can become used to the change.
Electronic messaging signs will be in place to inform motorists of the change in access to Cleveland Street. This 24 hour ramp closure involves an extension of the existing morning and evening peak hour arrangements.