The Tasmanian and Federal Governments are making progress to improve travel on the Tasman Highway, with the $46 million Midway Point Intersection Solution project well underway – hoping to cut lengthy delays.
The upgrade will see the existing roundabout replaced by signals and the current two-lane highway increased to dual lane in both directions.
The roundabout is currently operating near capacity, as queuing and delays become an issue, especially during peak periods.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, said the $46 million Midway Point Intersection Solution, jointly funded by the Federal and Tasmanian Governments, is designed to address these issues for local motorists.
“In addition to improved traffic flows, the upgrade will deliver better footpaths and bus facilities, which will also improve access in and around Midway Point. Slip lanes will provide better access from the highway to Penna Road,” Mr McCormack said.
Senator for Tasmania and Assistant Minister for Industry Development, Jonno Duniam, said the project is part of the South East Traffic Solution (SETS) program, which has a joint funding commitment of $349.5 million by the Federal and Tasmanian Governments.
“This is a great example of Federal and State Governments working together to deliver better road networks for the community. The six SETS projects are aimed at ensuring the Tasman Highway meets the current and future needs of commuters, freight operators and visitors,” Mr Duniam said.
Tasmanian Minister for Infrastructure, Michael Ferguson, said a new Hobart Airport Interchange is now in its second stage of construction with work underway on the overpass and works begun on providing a dual-lane direct link between the Tasman and Arthur Highways through the Sorell Southern Bypass.
“The Sorell Southern Bypass will take through traffic out of the Sorell town centre. This project will help improve safety and travel time reliability. It will improve access to Sorell businesses for local residents and visitors and improve traffic flow through the town centre,” Mr Ferguson said.
Concept designs for the $187 million duplication of the Midway Point and Sorell causeways will start in 2021, with the Federal Government committing $150 million and the Tasmanian Government $37 million; and planning is underway for duplication of the highway between Hobart Airport and Midway Point causeway.
When completed these projects will provide full duplication of the highway with four lanes between the Hobart Airport and Sorell. The first project, provision of overtaking lanes on the Arthur Highway, was completed in 2020.
The Midway Point Intersection Solution is expected to be complete in mid-2022.