The upgrade of the New England Highway at Bolivia Hill is a step closer to completion with traffic moved onto a new section of road as part of the $80 million Australian and New South Wales Government-funded project.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Federal Liberal and Nationals Government was investing heavily in improving safety on key roads across regional NSW.
“This project is another example of how we are working to deliver better road safety and productivity benefits for the New England region and New South Wales as a whole,” Mr McCormack said.
“As Government transport infrastructure is deemed essential, We will continue to deliver our record $100 billion pipeline of projects while ensuring the safety of workers and customers during COVID-19.”
NSW Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Paul Toole said the project was powering ahead with work also under way on the new concrete bridge deck.
“It is important this work continues to drive jobs, strengthen the economy and get people and freight to their destinations sooner and safer, especially in the current climate,” Mr Toole said.
“We are working with all our contractors to ensure measures have been put in place to protect our staff, including those working to build our road infrastructure.”
Transport for NSW is following the directive of NSW Health and is proactively addressing the situation as it evolves with expert advice from health and operational professionals.
Federal Member for New England Barnaby Joyce said the upgrade would improve safety and efficiency on this vital tourist and freight route and help support the economy through improved connectivity to the regions and markets.
“Work to widen and stabilise the eastern side of the highway will enable rebuilding work to start on the western side of the highway about 32 kilometres south of Tenterfield,” Mr Joyce said.
“Construction of the Bolivia Hill upgrade will continue to provide economic stability to the Tenterfield and Glen Innes communities, complement other recently completed projects such as the Scone Bypass and Armidale Airport Roundabout while also supporting major capital work on our corridor of commerce that is the New England Highway.”
NSW Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall said the local community is assured the project is sourcing water required for concrete production from a private bore hole near the work site and water is also collected and reused on site wherever possible.
“During the recent fires, the project team supported the Rural Fire Service by providing access to site facilities and water to assist with firefighting efforts, which was pivotal to getting those fires under control,” Mr Marshall said.
Transport for NSW advises motorists the New England Highway will continue to be reduced to one lane at Bolivia Hill while work continues on the upgrade.
Traffic control, traffic lights and CCTV cameras are all used to manage this alternate flow traffic arrangement 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with road users typically experiencing delays of no more than 10 minutes.
To view the latest project update or find other information about the project click here.