Pacific Highway: mega milestone for Woolgoolga to Ballina
The final link in the Pacific Highway upgrade is in its peak construction period, with more than 3,300 jobs being delivered to finish the final stage of the project.
Deputy Prime Minister, Nationals' Leader and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Australian Government had committed over $3.4 billion to the major project.
“This is a big milestone for the Pacific Highway upgrade and it is worth noting that 26 kilometres of new highway has already been opened between Woolgoolga and Glenugie with major work underway on the remaining sections of the 155-kilometre corridor,” Mr McCormack said.
“We are already seeing significant results as fatal crashes have halved, down from more than 40 each year to about 20 annually in recent years.”
NSW Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey said it was phenomenal that Australia's largest concrete paving project, requiring more than 750,000 of cubic metres of concrete, had reached just over the half way mark.
“This is a big milestone for the project, being the largest single upgrade in the 20 year history of the Pacific Highway duplication program,” Mrs Pavey said.
“When it opens to traffic in 2020, this 155 kilometre section will help to save lives, improve travel times, and contribute to regional growth, job creation and efficiencies in freight movements due to shorter travel times.”
Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan said a draft directional signage plan, now complete and available to view online, addressed key issues raised by the community.
“We plan to review the renaming of the existing highway and the proposed changes to signage for towns off the highway,” Mr Hogan said.
“There is still a lot more work to go, but we're getting closer to providing a safer and more reliable highway from Hexham to the Queensland border and we thank the community for its patience.”
NSW Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis said that this project was more than just about bricks and mortar, delivering more than 3,3000 direct jobs.
“The Liberals and Nationals are focused on not only building the roads but also building the skills of the local community. This means that local people can be part of delivering this incredible infrastructure project, leaving a long term positive legacy.”
The Australian and NSW governments are jointly funding the Pacific Highway—Woolgoolga to Ballina upgrade.
More than 80 per cent of the $5.64 billion duplication of the Pacific Highway between Hexham and the Queensland border is complete.
For the latest information on the Woolgoolga to Ballina upgrade, including a September 2018 project-wide community update and paving fact sheet, visit www.rms.nsw.gov.au/projects/northern-nsw/woolgoolga-to-ballina/index.html