May 27, 2011

A historic day for Alstonville: Bypass opens

A historic day for Alstonville: Bypass opens

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

Minister for Infrastructure & Transport

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

27 May 2011

Almost 40 years after the first line on a map was drawn, the Alstonville Bypass is a reality following today’s officially opening – a tribute to the persistence of all those in the local community who have championed the project over many years.

Federal Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese said the $97 million southern bypass of Alstonville and Wollongbar was one of the first road projects to be commissioned by the current Federal Labor Government, with construction having commenced in May 2009.

“So determined to honour a key election pledge and build this long awaited piece infrastructure as quickly as possible, we brought forward the necessary funding in our very first budget,” said Mr Albanese.

“The opening of the bypass will have immediate and positive benefits for Alstonville residents, most notably it will reduce the volume of traffic passing through town by up to 50 per cent,” said Mr Albanese.

“That’s more than 6,000 fewer cars and 700 fewer trucks a day on local streets.

“Importantly, this is just one example of the unprecedented investment the Gillard Labor Government is making in NSW. All up, we’re investing $12 billion – or a third of our Nation Building Program – to renew and expand the State’s road and rail infrastructure.”

The fully Federally-funded two-lane single carriageway bypass runs 6.2 kilometres starting at Sneaths Road, Wollongbar, and re-joining the Bruxner Highway near the Tropical Research Station at Perrys Hill east of Alstonville.

NSW Roads Minister Duncan Gay said completion of the bypass will cut travel times and deliver better driving conditions for the more than 14,000 motorists and truck drivers which use this section of highway.

“This is a long awaited development and today’s opening is good news for the people of Alstonville,” said Mr Gay.

“The bypass will provide significant benefits, including quicker travel times and better traffic flow along the existing highway, clearing a major bottleneck between Ballina and Lismore.”