The Federal and NSW Governments have revealed a $40 million investment for upgrades and improvements to reduce the risk of accidents along the Pacific Highway – through the Road Safety Program.
The projects to improve safety on the Mid-North Coast are rolling out along the Pacific Highway between Karuah and Middle Brother, delivering safer, smoother journeys.
Federal Assistant Minister for Road Safety and Freight Transport, Scott Buchholz, said, “The Federal Liberal and Nationals Government has committed $297.4 million and the NSW Government a further $108.9 million to fund state-wide upgrades under the first tranche of the program.
“This funding has allowed Transport for NSW to fast-track delivery of projects at Karuah, Topi Topi, Coolongolook, Cundletown, Ghinni Ghinni and Middle Brother.”
NSW Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Paul Toole, said these works built upon the safety benefits already delivered from duplicating the 657km stretch of the Pacific Highway from Hexham to the Queensland border, which crossed the finish line in December 2020.
“We know what a game changer the Pacific Highway upgrade has been – a $15 billion investment by the Australian and NSW Governments, creating more than 100,000 jobs over the multi-generational build, and reducing fatalities by more than 75 per cent,” Mr Toole said.
“Now we’re going to see even greater safety dividends because we continue to invest in projects like these that are designed to save lives on our roads.”
Federal Member for Lyne, David Gillespie, said the stimulus funding would improve safety for the more than 25,000 motorists who travel along the Pacific Highway each day.
“These projects are delivering upgrades to approximately 25km of the highway, and include road widening, resurfacing, installing safety barriers and rolling out rumble strips to alert drivers when they are drifting out of their lane,” Dr Gillespie said.
“On top of improving safety, these projects are generating work for more than 250 people, which is a welcome boost to our local economies.”
State Member for Myall Lakes, Stephen Bromhead, said work will be starting on an 11.75km stretch at Ghinni Ghinni in late 2021, to resurface and improve road levels and install rumble strips on both the northbound and southbound lanes, as well as installing sections of new safety barriers.
“Planning is also under way for improvements at the Cundletown interchange to increase safety and access for larger freight vehicles, by lengthening and improving the curve of the on and off ramps,” Mr Bromhead said.
“The upgrade of the Cundletown interchange will support the development of the Northern Gateway Transport Hub on Princes Street, being delivered by MidCoast Council.”
State Member for Port Macquarie, Leslie Williams, said work at Middle Brother has been underway since May 2021 and will be carried out intermittently until December 2021.
“Crews have been improving the road shoulders along a 3km section of highway, and installing wire rope safety barriers and rumble strips,” Mrs Williams said.
“The Pacific Highway is the busiest transport and freight route north of Newcastle, so it’s great to see work under way to ensure those who use it every day will be completing their journeys safely.”
The Federal Government has committed a further $125.7 million and the NSW Government $56.9 million, under the second tranche of the Road Safety Program.
All projects are expected to be completed by the end of 2022.
Motorists are advised to drive to the conditions, and follow the direction of signs and traffic control.
For more information on these projects, please visit here.