City of Newcastle, Australia

The design and construction contract for the fifth section of the Newcastle Inner City Bypass has been awarded, with work to begin in late 2022.

Fulton Hogan Construction has been awarded the contract to design and build the fifth section.

This section of works will deliver the ‘missing link’ of the bypass between Rankin Park and Jesmond, meaning a faster, safer commute for locals who will be able to bypass 11 sets of traffic lights along this notorious stretch of road.

Federal Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Minister, Catherine King, said this 3.4km stage of the bypass will be one of Newcastle’s largest infrastructure projects.

“This is an exciting day for the community, who have long benefitted from the previous stages of the Newcastle Inner City Bypass and know the positive impact this project will have on travel times and congestion,” Ms King said.

“Once the bypass is complete, commuters will enjoy a reduction of up to 80 per cent on travel times during the morning and afternoon peaks, bypassing eleven sets of traffic lights between Rankin Park and Jesmond.”

The contract will also involve delivering an early works package, on Lookout Road and McCaffrey Drive, to enable Fulton Hogan to accelerate work around the southern interchange later in 2022. 

Major work is expected to start in October 2022 with the first cars expected to drive along the new bypass in 2025.

The $450 million project is jointly funded on an 80:20 basis by the Australian and New South Wales governments. 

New South Wales Metropolitan Roads Minister, Natalie Ward, said the New South Wales Government has committed $90 million towards this project, which is expected to create up to 900 jobs during major work.

“The Newcastle Inner City Bypass has been designed to provide traffic relief to the surrounding road network by removing up to 30,000 vehicles each day from Lookout Road, Croudace Street and Newcastle Road,” Ms Ward said.

“This is a transformational project for the city that will improve traffic flow, reduce travel times and enhance safety for all road users.” 

Transport for NSW is working closely with NSW Health to ensure the project aligns with work on the John Hunter Health Innovation Precinct and to provide a second access road to the hospital campus.

Federal Member for Newcastle, Sharon Claydon, said it is exciting to see the early work at the southern end of the project nearing completion in preparation for major work on the bypass to kick off later in 2022. 

“Over the past six months, workers have been busy relocating existing utilities including water, sewer, electrical, gas and telecommunications to pave the way for major work on this vital project,” Ms Claydon said.

“This job-creating project is good for local workers and will be a big win for commuters across Newcastle.”

For more information, visit the Transport for NSW website here.

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