Ballina Bypass: Delivering New Infrastructure
The Hon Anthony Albanese
Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,
Regional Development and Local Government
NSW Minister for Roads
Minister for Commerce
Friday, 23 May 2008
The Australian and NSW governments today re-affirmed their commitment to the joint upgrade of the Pacific Highway with the official announcement of the start of preliminary site work on the Ballina bypass project.
Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Anthony Albanese and NSW Roads Minister Eric Roozendaal today announced that work has begun on establishing the site office and construction area at Teven Road and Ross Lane for the construction of the Ballina bypass upgrade.
Construction teams will then begin clearing the site, the installation of erosion and sediment controls and fencing next month.
“Thanks to $100 million delivered in the Rudd Labor Government’s first budget, construction on this project will begin at least 12 months earlier than scheduled,” Mr Albanese said.
“The Ballina bypass project is 12.4km long and will extend from the south of Ballina at the intersection of the Bruxner and Pacific highways to north of Ballina at the intersection of Ross Lane at Tintenbar.
“The bypass will be significantly shorter than the current 19 km route through Ballina and will offer a travel time saving up to 12 minutes for Pacific Highway traffic.
“It will deliver significant improvements in road safety, providing an improved alignment at Tintenbar Hill, removal of the high speed traffic out of Ballina township and separate Bruxner Highway traffic from the Pacific Highway traffic.
“The Rudd Labor Government has committed to invest $2.45 billion in upgrading this critical piece of national infrastructure – three times what the previous government allocated over a similar period of time.”
Mr Roozendaal said the bypass will reduce traffic congestion by directing highway vehicles away from seven roundabouts, a set of traffic lights, numerous minor intersections and a 60 km speed zone.
“Initial earthworks were completed by the RTA in the vicinity of Teven Road and Emigrant Creek at Cumbalum in September 2007,” Mr Roozendaal said.
“Long lead times are required to stabilise soft soil sections of the Richmond River before the main pavement can be constructed. The project will be opened in stages which will be:
- Opening of the Cumbalum to Ross Lane section by late 2010
- Opening of the Bruxner Highway to Cumbalum interchange by mid 2012.
Mr Albanese said the entire length of the Pacific Highway is now either completed, under construction or has a preferred route identified.
“The completed Pacific Highway upgrade will mean more than 660km of continuous dual carriageway from the F3 Freeway near Hexham to the Queensland border,” Mr Albanese said.
“More than 91km of the Pacific Highway is currently under construction while more than 263km has already been upgraded to double-lane divided road.”
Mr Roozendaal said 48 separate sections of the highway have been completed and the NSW Government had declared the project critical infrastructure because of its importance to NSW and the state’s economy.
“NSW is working co-operatively with the Rudd Labor Government to complete this critical link between Sydney and Brisbane as soon as possible, for the benefit of working families and the NSW and Australian economies.
“There’s more work to do and both governments are committed to getting on with the job of completing this nation-building road project.”
“While we can never be complacent, the road toll on the Pacific Highway between Hexham and the Queensland border has more than halved since 2003 as upgraded sections open to traffic and extensive road safety improvement packages are implemented.”
Further information on this major infrastructure project is available from the Pacific Highway section of the RTA website at www.rta.nsw.gov.au.