MELBOURNE'S port operator has moved to quell fears truck curfews in residential Footscray and Yarraville streets are under threat.
Last week, the Weekly reported the government and Port of Melbourne Corporation (PoMC) had flagged freight delivery moving to nights and weekends to deal with the doubling of truck numbers on Melbourne's roads over the next decade.
Port chief executive Stephen Bradford said the changes would affect arterial rather than local roads.
"Appreciating the concerns of inner west residents, PoMC's long-stated position on this matter is unambiguous.
We have always fully supported the curfews. We think they make sense."
Mr Bradford questioned the view that the port was the main contributor to local traffic, saying of the 20,000 vehicles travelling along Francis Street each day, 5000 were trucks and only half were port-related.
A spokeswoman for Roads Minister Terry Mulder said the government was aware of the impact of truck movements through residential areas. She said $5 million would be spent on the Victorian Freight and Logistics Plan to guide future infrastructure planning and investment.
"VicRoads will continue to monitor truck curfews to ensure their effectiveness."
Curfews on Francis Street and Somerville Road apply from 8pm-6am Monday-Saturday and 1pm Saturday to 6am Monday.
VicRoads regional director Patricia Liew said the curfews had resulted in an "immediate, significant decrease" in truck traffic along residential streets in Footscray and Yarraville during the curfew window. "If any changes to truck curfews were proposed, VicRoads would first consult with relevant councils, members of the transport industry, local businesses, local residents and Victoria Police."
Ports Minister Denis Napthine said the Webb Dock redevelopment would include a dedicated port road with enhanced access to the M1, removing trucks from local roads. Swanson Dock expansion would occur over time and greater access to the port by rail "encouraged".