Update - October 2023

We’re working to finalise an options assessment to determine the preferred alignment for the Ararat Bypass and the appropriate planning approvals process. 

These planning works are funded by the Australian and Victorian governments. There is no funding for construction of an Ararat bypass.

Ararat Bypass Planning map of works

View a larger version of the map

Next steps

Once the options assessment process is complete and a planning pathway determined, we will nominate a preferred alignment and inform the community. Following the nomination of a preferred alignment, we will begin a planning approval process to apply a Public Acquisition Overlay (PAO) over affected land. A PAO will allow us to reserve land for road purposes and enable that land to be acquired for the Ararat bypass project, should it be funded for construction in the future.

We will provide further information on the planning process going forward and prior to the commencement of any formal exhibition process. 


The Western Highway is one of the busiest highways in the country. It is the principal road corridor between Melbourne and Adelaide and a key transport corridor through Victoria’s western districts, supporting farming, regional tourism, and a range of manufacturing and service activities. 

The highway currently passes through the Ararat township. Travel efficiency, town amenity and road safety are key factors for the need for the bypass.

An Ararat bypass will address the existing and future traffic and safety challenges, improve freight routes and make the town centre more attractive for locals and visitors.

We have undertaken a series of studies as part of planning to investigate the potential impacts a bypass may have on:

  • the environment
  • cultural heritage
  • social activities
  • the economy
  • land use planning
  • agriculture
  • hydrology
  • traffic volumes and safety.

The results of these investigations will give us a good understanding of impacts in the area so we can determine the best route for a bypass of Ararat.

For information on the Western Highway duplication, please visit Western Highway Duplication - Victoria’s Big Build.


Community feedback is one of several factors considered in selecting a preferred alignment. We also consider findings from environmental surveys, cultural studies, technical assessments and traffic modelling.

The community and landowners have provided input at various stages of the planning process through meetings and community drop-in sessions. Public sessions were held in February 2015, August 2016, December 2016, July 2017 and March and April 2018.

Feedback at each of these stages, along with the results of technical and environmental assessments, has informed design decisions as planning progresses.

Discussions with property owners and residents in this area will continue to further minimise impacts, where possible.

There will be an opportunity for members of the public to make a submission as part of a future planning process when a preferred alignment is formally exhibited.

Get in touch

If you have any questions about this project, please get in touch.

Email: [email protected]

Call:    133 RRV

Visit:   Regional Roads Victoria - 88 Learmonth Road, Wendouree

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