The contract to deliver the $17 million Cessnock Road upgrade at Testers Hollow, in the Hunter Valley region of New South Wales, has been awarded.

Daracon Contractors won the contract, which is set to provide a boost to the Hunter region’s economy.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, said, “Cessnock Road is an important regional transport route and upgrading it will deliver social and economic benefits.

“This is yet another example of the Australian Government continuing to roll out our $100 billion nationwide infrastructure pipeline, supporting jobs and communities at a time when it’s needed most.”

New South Wales Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Paul Toole, said the Australian and New South Wales governments had invested in the upgrade to reduce the impact of flooding and improve connectivity.

“We are pleased to be partnering with the Australian Government to deliver this important upgrade for the Hunter,” Mr Toole said.

“Every time it floods, there is a risk that this road is impassable, which creates a lot of frustration and delays, not to mention a safety issue. 

“This upgrade will ensure all road users including freight vehicles can keep moving.”

Senator for New South Wales, Hollie Hughes, said the awarding of the building contract was a major step forward for the project.

“Raising the height of Cessnock Road at Testers Hollow will help reduce the frequency, duration and impact of flood events along Cessnock Road,” Ms Hughes said.

“This improvement will enhance connectivity between the Maitland area, Hunter Expressway and the broader community during heavy rain periods.”

New South Wales Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter, Catherine Cusack, said motorists would soon see major benefits materialising from the project.

“The upgrade involves building a new two-lane road at a level about 1.5m higher than the existing road surface to keep this stretch flood-free even during heavy rainfall,” Ms Cusack said.

“Construction is expected to begin later this year, and the new length of road is expected to be open to traffic in around two years, weather permitting.”

The Australian Government has committed $15 million to the project on top of the $2 million committed by the New South Wales Government.

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