The $618 million, fully-Federally funded Kempsey Bypass, which boasts Australia’s longest bridge, has been completed and opened in time for the Easter holidays, more than 15 months ahead of schedule.
Federal Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese said the completion of this major project means faster, safer journeys for holiday-makers and is another major step forward in the ongoing upgrade and duplication of the Pacific Highway.
“The remarkable speed at which this new section of highway was built is a tribute to the expertise and hard work of all those involved, particularly the contractors and their many workers,” said Mr Albanese.
“The scale of this engineering project is highlighted by the fact that the new 3.2 kilometre bridge which has been erected over the Macleay River and nearby floodplains now holds the title of Australia’s longest bridge
“Funded as part of our highly successful Economic Stimulus Plan, the new Bypass will also transform the towns of Kempsey and Frederickton, taking up to 2,000 trucks a day off their local streets and making both even better places to live and raise a family.”
During the construction phase the project created some 360 direct and 1,100 indirect jobs, NSW Minister for Roads and Ports Duncan Gay said.
“The completed project allows motorists to bypass Kempsey and Frederickton, saving them both time and money,” said Mr Gay.
The NSW Government provided joint funding for the planning and project approval phase of the 40 kilometre Kempsey to Eungai upgrade project, of which the Kempsey Bypass is the first stage.
Roads and Maritime Services project management ensured its efficient delivery 15 months ahead of schedule.
“The Kempsey Bypass is a 14.5 kilometre long divided four lane highway with grade separated intersections at South Kempsey and Frederickton,” said Mr Gay.
“As well as constructing Australia’s longest bridge, the project also involved some 1.4 million cubic metres of earthworks and the building of nine smaller bridge structures for interchanges, small creek crossings, local road overpasses and a crossing of the main north south rail line.”