Working within the road reserve

Do you need to do work within the road reserve (including the roadway and/or the roadside)? Is the road a freeway or an arterial road? If you want to conduct work in, on, under or over a road, you may need to notify and get consent from VicRoads.

The information provided on this page is for guidance only and does not override the requirements of the Road Management Act 2004 and Regulations, or any other Act, regulations and Government Policy.

Determine if the proposed works are exempt

The Road Management Act requires you to:

  • notify the coordinating road authority of any proposed installation of non-road infrastructure and related works, and/or
  • get consent from the coordinating road authority prior to commencing work, and/or
  • notify the coordinating road authority following completion of works.

Some exemptions or variations to these requirements may apply.

Determine which road authority to contact

Contact the coordinating road authority and submit your notification or application for consent. Please note that VicRoads is the coordinating road authority for freeways and arterial roads.

Image of truck and bulldozer excavating on roadFor further guidance about the requirements which must be followed when working in a road reserve, please refer to the following document.

For additional information including frequently asked questions, process chart and examples, download the following document.

For more information on what application for consent form is to be used, please refer to the section below titled 'What application forms do I use for Notification and/or Consent?'



There are some works that do not require you to notify, or get the consent of the coordinating road authority. These works are identified below. Consent must be sought for all works on freeways.

General exemptions

General exemptions to notification and consent apply to the following works on arterial roads, where those works are not 'traffic impact works' :

  • driveway works
  • mowing the roadside (eg mowing nature strips).

Works conducted in an emergency

Consent is not required where works are conducted in an emergency by, or with the authority of, the relevant infrastructure manager e.g. utility, or provider of public transport. Notification of completed works must still be provided to VicRoads on freeways and arterial roads (where the works involve roadway, pathway or shoulder).

Other exemptions

Other exemptions apply depending on the type of organisation and nature of the work.

For full details, refer to the Road Management (Works and Infrastructure) Regulations 2015

If you are a Utility (or its Agent) or a Provider of Public Transport (or its Agent) then you must obtain consent and notify VicRoads for all works on arterial roads except as detailed below.

A Utility (or its Agent) or a Provider of Public Transport (or its Agent) is exempt from notifying VicRoads of the proposed installation of Non-Road Infrastructure or related works on arterial roads. Consent for the works from VicRoads and notification to VicRoads following the completion of the works is required, except where exemptions apply as shown in the following table.

Note:  Utility, Provider of Public Transport, Agent and Non-Road Infrastructure are defined terms in the Road Management Act 2004.

ActivityA
Exempt from:
Prior Notification
Exempt from:
Consent
Exempt from:
Completed Works Notification
‘Minor worksB that are not ‘traffic impact works’ and:


1. do not consist of, or include, the excavation of any part of a roadway, pathway or shoulder 
Yes  Yes  Yes 
2. do consist of, or include, the excavation of any part of a roadway, pathway or shoulder (whether the excavation is less than or greater than 8.5 sq m) Yes  Yes  No C
Minor works’ that are ‘traffic impact works’
Yes
No
No
Works that are not ‘minor works’  Yes  No  No 

Notes: 

  • A - In order to use the above Table to determine if any exemptions apply, you must also read and understand the definitions of 'minor works' and 'traffic impact works' and the regulations in the Road Management (Works and Infrastructure) Regulations 2015.  The terms ‘works’, 'roadway', ‘pathway' and 'shoulder' are defined in the Road Management Act 2004.
  • B - Works that consist of, or include, the excavation of an area of a roadway, pathway or shoulder exceeding 8.5 square metres are not ''minor works'.
  • C - 'Minor works' that include an excavation solely for the purpose of repairing, maintaining, installing or replacing a single pole in an urban area or no more than 3 poles in any other area are exempt from the requirement to give notice of the completion of the work.

If you are a Responsible Road Authority (or its Agent) but not the Coordinating Road Authority, then you must obtain consent and notify VicRoads for all works on arterial roads except as detailed below.

A Responsible Road Authority (or its Agent) is exempt from notifying VicRoads of the proposed installation of Non-Road Infrastructure or related works on arterial roads. Consent for the works from VicRoads and notification to VicRoads following the completion of the works is required, except where exemptions apply as shown in the following table.

Note:  Responsible Road Authority, Coordinating Road Authority and Agent are defined terms in the Road Management Act 2004.


ActivityA
Exempt from:
Prior Notification
Exempt from:
Consent
Exempt from:
Completed Works Notification
‘Minor worksB that are not ‘traffic impact works’ and:


1. do not consist of, or include, the excavation of any part of a roadway, pathway or shoulder
Yes
Yes
Yes
2. do consist of, or include, the excavation of any part of a roadway, pathway or shoulder (whether the excavation is less than or greater than 8.5 sq m)  Yes  Yes  No 
‘Minor works’ that are ‘traffic impact works’  Yes  No  No 
Works that are not ‘minor works’  Yes  No  No 
Construction, repair or maintenance of a pathway that is not 'traffic impact works'. Yes Yes Yes

Notes

  • A - In order to use the above Table to determine if any exemptions apply, you must also read and understand the definitions of 'minor works' and 'traffic impact works' and the regulations in the Road Management (Works and Infrastructure) Regulations 2015.  The terms ‘works’, 'roadway', ‘pathway' and 'shoulder' are defined in the Road Management Act 2004.
  • B - Works that consist of, or include, the excavation of an area of a roadway, pathway or shoulder exceeding 8.5 square metres are not ''minor works'.

Fire authorities

If you are the Metropolitan Fire and Emergency Services Board (or its agent) or the Country Fire Authority (or its agent) or water corporation, then you must notify and obtain consent from VicRoads for all works on arterial roads except as shown in the table below.

Activity Exempt from:
Prior Notification
Exempt from:
Consent
Exempt from:
Completed Works Notification
Works consisting of the inspection or maintenance of the water valves or fire hydrants, not being 'traffic impact works'. Not Applicable Yes
Yes
  • All freeways and arterial roads (listed in VicRoads Register of Public Roads) – contact VicRoads region (listed in VicRoads Offices and Contacts).
  • Municipal roads – contact the local council.
  • Non-arterial roads – contact the responsible body (e.g. Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, Alpine Resort Management Boards, etc.).

From the Maps of Declared Roads you are able to search for any road within Victoria and determine if it is a freeway, arterial road, non arterial state road or a municipal road (shown as local roads).

All notifications or applications for consent (see forms below) relating to works on a freeway or an arterial road are to be sent to the relevant VicRoads regional office, shown on the Maps of Declared Roads.

You can post, email or hand deliver the relevant to the regional office.

Contact the relevant local council for enquiries regarding municipal (local) roads.

VicRoads Region
Email address
Location and Postal address
Metropolitan
North West
[email protected]
VicRoads
- Metro North West
499 Ballarat Road
SUNSHINE
Private Bag 4000
SUNSHINE VIC 3020
Metropolitan
South East
[email protected]
VicRoads
- Metro South East
12 Lakeside Drive
BURWOOD EAST
Private Bag 4
MOUNT WAVERLEY VIC 3149
Eastern
Region
[email protected]
VicRoads
- Eastern Region
120 Kay Street
TRARALGON
PO Box 158
TRARALGON VIC 3844
North
Eastern Region
[email protected]
VicRoads
- North Eastern Region
50 - 52 Clarke Street
BENALLA
PO Box 135
BENALLA VIC 3672
Northern
Region
[email protected]
VicRoads
- Northern Region
53-61Lansell Street
EAST BENDIGO VIC 3550
South
Western Region
[email protected]
VicRoads
- South Western Region
180 Fyans Street
SOUTH GEELONG
PO Box 775
GEELONG VIC 3220

Western
Region
[email protected]
VicRoads
- Western Region
88 Learmonth Road
WENDOUREE VIC 3355

Email submissions (View the application form in MS Excel or CSV format only)

  • Launch the .XLS form.
  • Enter the required information.
  • Allocate a unique number for your organisation as the "Applicants Ref:"
  • Email with any other relevant/required plans or documents in either .PDF or .DOC format. The title/subject line of your email must contain your unique reference number.
  • Payment to be forwarded to relevant the VicRoads Regional office.

For further details for electronic submission, please refer to:

There is only a fee payable for an application for consent, based on the road classification and work type. The fees are expressed in fee units with the equivalent dollar amount in brackets.

No fees are payable for notification of proposed works or notification of completed works.

Works (other than minor works conducted by a person referred to in regulation 10(2) that are traffic impact works)

Road Classification Conducted on any part of the roadway, shoulder or pathway Not conducted on any part of the roadway, shoulder or pathway
Freeway 43.2
($614.30)
30.2
($429.40)
Arterial Road 43.2
($614.30)
30.2
($429.40)
Municipal road or non arterial State road where maximum speed limit at anytime is more than 50kph 43.1
($612.90)
23.5
($334.20)
Municipal road or non arterial State road where maximum speed limit at anytime is not more than 50kph 23.5
($334.20)
6.0
($85.30)

Minor works conducted by a person referred to in regulation 10(2) that are traffic impact works

Road Classification Conducted on any part of the roadway, shoulder or pathway Not conducted on any part of the roadway, shoulder or pathway
Freeway 16.0
($227.50)
9.5
($135.10)
Arterial Road 16.0
($227.50)
9.5
($135.10)
Municipal road or non arterial State road where maximum speed limit at anytime is more than 50kph 9.3
($132.20)
6.0
($85.30)
Municipal road or non arterial State road where maximum speed limit at anytime is not more than 50kph 9.3
($132.20)
6.0
($85.30)

All notifications and applications for consent (including those delivered or mailed) will receive an acknowledgment of receipt of the submission together with a VicRoads reference number and contact details for any enquiries relating to that submission.

If all appropriate information is provided, VicRoads will respond in writing within 20 business days of receipt of the application.

This period is varied for the following utility works:

  • 15 business days for service extension works, and
  • 3 business days to enable a person to be provided with a service by a utility.

Where a response has not been made within these periods, VicRoads is to be taken to have given written consent for the proposed works.

Assessment of detailed design drawings and specifications for roadworks

If you have received a planning permit for the subdivision or development of land adjoining an arterial road, and as a condition(s) on that permit, you are required to construct certain roadworks (e.g. road widening, deceleration lane, traffic signals), then the detailed design drawings and specifications for the roadworks must be assessed as being to the satisfaction of VicRoads.

To undertake the 'assessment' process in compliance with the permit condition(s), you may either:

  • pay a pre-estimated charge to engage VicRoads services to conduct the assessment on your behalf of the roadworks detailed design drawings and specifications, or alternatively
  • engage a VicRoads pre-qualified consultant yourself to conduct the roadworks design and specification assessment.

The VicRoads 'assessment' charge (which will be reviewed annually) ranges from $4,400 (for minor rural arterial roadworks with a value generally less than $50,000) up to $18,880 (for major urban arterial roadworks with a value greater than $150,000).

For large, complex projects, charges will be determined on an individual project basis.  For further details, please contact your nearest VicRoads Regional office.

Supervision of roadworks

If you are proposing to carry out roadworks in association with the subdivision or development of land adjoining an arterial road, and as a condition(s) on that permit, you are required to construct certain roadworks (eg road widening, deceleration lane, traffic signals), an application for consent (including payment of the relevant consent application fee) must be sent to VicRoads.

When issuing its written consent, VicRoads will include as part of any special conditions regarding the conduct of the works a requirement that 'certification audits' be undertaken to ensure that the works are carried out to VicRoads satisfaction and in accordance with any planning permit conditions, approved design drawings and specifications.  To undertake the 'certification audits', you may either:

  • pay a pre-estimated charge to engage VicRoads services to conduct certification audits of the proposed roadworks on your behalf; or alternatively
  • engage a surveillance service provider yourself, as agreed by VicRoads, to conduct the certification audits.

The 'certification audits' charge (which will be reviewed and indexed annually) ranges from $4,500 (for minor rural arterial roadworks with a value generally less than $50,000) up to $8,660 (for major urban arterial roadworks with a value greater than $150,000).  For large, complex projects, charges will be determined on an individual project basis.  For further details, please contact your nearest VicRoads Regional office.

Any dispute about consent or the conditions imposed on the consent should be resolved by negotiation between the applicant and the relevant VicRoads officer.

If the dispute has not been resolved by these negotiations, VicRoads, upon receipt of written notification of the dispute, will seek to apply the following dispute resolution process:
Resolution by:

  • those closest to the workface. If not resolved within 10 working days escalation to
  • line managers. If not resolved within 10 working days, escalation to;
  • Chief Executive Officers or their nominees. If not resolved within 10 working days, escalation to
  • relevant road and utility Ministers or their nominees.

(a)Traffic Management Plan

If you are conducting, or proposing to conduct, works on a road (whether on the roadway, shoulder or roadside), then you must have a traffic management plan.  You must also have a copy of your traffic management plan on site at all times when workers are present.  The traffic management plan is required to ensure that your work is conducted in a manner that is safe for road users and workers on the road.

You should prepare your traffic management plan in accordance with the Code of Practice for Worksite Safety - Traffic Management 

(b) Memorandum of Authorisation (MoA)

If you have assessed your worksite safety in line with the Code of Practice for Worksite Safety - Traffic Management and your traffic management plan requires the use of traffic control devices, then you will require the appropriate authorisation (ie. a Memorandum of Authorisation or MoA) in accordance with the Road Safety (Traffic Management) Regulations 2009 (you can view the Road Safety (Traffic Management) Regulations 2009 on the Victorian Law Today website (External link)).

Your request for authorisation for the use of certain traffic control devices should be submitted on the Memorandum of Authorisation form [XLXS 109Kb].

For further information regarding the requirements for an MoA, please refer to the following fact sheets:

Note:  An MoA is not consent from the coordinating road authority to conduct works within the road reserve.
  


Unless exempt, the person or organisation who conducted the works must notify the coordinating road authority within 7 business days of completing the works, including any reinstatement works.

This period is extended to the 14th day of the month next following the completion of works for a utility or its agent where it is exempt from the requirement to obtain consent.

The following definitions are included in the Road Management (Works and Infrastructure) Regulations 2015.

Minor works:

Minor works are any of the following kinds of works undertaken by a utility, a provider of public transport, a responsible road authority or an agent of any of these bodies—

(a)  the installation, repair or maintenance of aerial cables or other overhead non-road infrastructure;

(b)  works undertaken so as to enable a person to be provided a service by a utility;

(c) the repair or maintenance of - 

  1. street lighting; or
  2. bus stop infrastructure, tram stop infrastructure or other public transport related non-road infrastructure located on the roadside; or
  3. tram tracks, including the roadway area between and on the outside of the tram tracks for which the relevant provider of public transport is responsible;
(d)  the excavation of - 
  1. any part of a road other than a roadway, pathway or shoulder; or
  2. an area of a roadway, pathway or shoulder

    Note: Regulation 6(2)(b) provides that if works under (d) above also exceed 8.5 square metres, then those works are not minor works.

(e)  the use of an access hole for the purpose of accessing, repairing or maintaining infrastructure under a road;

(f)  the installation, repair or maintenance of traffic control devices carried out in accordance with the Road Safety Act 1986 or any regulations made under that Act;

(g) the repair or maintenance of poles;

(h) the replacement or relocation of a single pole in an urban area (unless those works are part of works to replace or relocate 2 or more consecutive poles);

(i)  the replacement or relocation of not more than 3 poles in an area other than an urban area (unless those works are part of works to replace or relocate more than 3 consecutive poles);

(j)  the pruning of a tree or other vegetation; 

(k) the removal of a tree or other vegetation in accordance with any Act other than the Road Management Act 2004;

(l)  any other works conducted for the purpose of repairing, inspecting, operating or testing an asset or for the purpose of a survey.

If any of the works listed in (a) to (l) above also consist of, or include any of the following works, then those works are not minor works - 

(a)  service extension works;

(b)  the excavation of an area of a roadway, pathway or shoulder exceeding 8.5 square metres;

(c)  works undertaken by a utility to decommission or remove, by excavating or filling any part of a road, non-road infrastructure (other than poles, aerial cables or other overhead non-road infrastructure) - 

      1. that is located longitudinally within a road reserve - 

         (A) over a distance exceeding 100 metres in an urban area; or 
         (B) over a distance exceeding 300 metres in any other area; or

      2. that is located under a roadway, pathway or shoulder and the works require the excavation of more than 8.5 square metres of that roadway, pathway or shoulder; or

      3. that affects road-related infrastructure.       


Traffic impact works:

Traffic impact works means - 

(a)  works conducted—

      (i) on a freeway; or

      (ii) on an arterial road that require the deviation of vehicular traffic into an on-coming traffic lane; or 

      (iii) in a clearway when it is in operation; or

      (iv) in a bus lane when it is in operation; or

      (v) on, or partly on, or that affect, a bridge or other structure; or

      (vi) on a roadway within 20 metres either side of a children's crossing when that crossing is in operation, unless parking is permitted within 20 metres either side of the crossing and the works are conducted on that parking area; or

      (vii) within a road reserve on, or in the vicinity of, a level crossing within the meaning of section 221U of the Transport (Compliance and Miscellaneous) Act 1983; or

(b)  peak hour traffic works; or
(c)  works that require a part of a roadway, other than a part on which parking is permitted, to be closed to vehicular traffic for—

      (i) a continuous period of more than 12 hours; or

      (ii) for a period of more than 24 hours in 7 days; or

(d)  works that require the cancellation, deviation to a different road or replacement, of a tram or bus operated by a provider of public transport; or

(e) works conducted on a road in an urban area within metropolitan Melbourne, Geelong, Ballarat or Bendigo—

      (i) that are likely to have a duration of more than 15 minutes; and

      (ii) that are likely to cause a delay to a bus or tram for more than 2 minutes between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. or 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. on a weekday; or

(f)  works conducted on a road in an urban area within metropolitan Melbourne, Geelong, Ballarat or Bendigo—

     (i) that are likely to have a duration of more than 2 hours; and

     (ii) that are likely to cause a delay to a bus or tram for more than 5 minutes between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. on a weekday; or

(g)  works that cause the temporary closure or relocation of a bus stop or tram stop or prevent access to a bus stop or tram stop in an urban area for more than 15 minutes; or

(h)  works conducted in an urban area, between 6 a.m. and 8 p.m., on the roadway of an arterial road, within 100 metres of an intersection with traffic signals, which require the closure to vehicular traffic of one or more lanes on that roadway that are available to through traffic; or

      (i) works conducted in circumstances to which a declaration under regulation 9 applies.


Peak hour traffic works
Works conducted on a roadway are peak hour traffic works if the works are conducted between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. or between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. on a weekday on a roadway of an arterial road in an urban area (other than a roadway that is a service road) and any of the following paragraphs apply—

(a) the roadway has one lane for vehicular traffic to travel in each direction and the works are conducted in any lane and result in vehicular traffic in that lane during that time being continuously stopped for more than 5 minutes;

(b) the roadway has more than one lane for vehicular traffic to travel in each direction and the works are conducted in one or more (but not all) of the lanes that are for travel in one direction and result in vehicular traffic in those lanes during that time being continuously stopped for more than 15 minutes;

(c) the roadway has more than one lane for vehicular traffic to travel in each direction and the works are conducted in all of the lanes that are for travel in one direction and result in vehicular traffic in those lanes during that time being stopped for any period of time.


Contacts

If you require further information in relation to working within the road reserve of a freeway or an arterial road, you should contact the VicRoads regional office or telephone 13 11 71.

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