Pictured with State Member for Upper Hunter Michael Johnsen and Upper Hunter Shire Mayor Wayne Bedggood
inspecting the concrete girders to be used in construction of the Scone Bypass.
Major construction has started on the two-lane New England Highway bypass of Scone with the delivery of 27-metre long concrete bridge girders.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Michael McCormack said the bypass would ensure Scone and the region continued to thrive.
“Around Australia, the Liberal and Nationals’ Government is investing in making sure people can get home sooner and safer, and the Scone bypass is another part of this nationwide plan,” Mr McCormack said.
NSW Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey said the Scone bypass will help boost productivity.
“The Scone bypass will create a more efficient road network and better freight movement, reducing the number of heavy vehicles using the Kelly Street level crossing and entering town,” Mrs Pavey said.
Federal Member for New England Barnaby Joyce said the separation of highway and local traffic would also increase safety.
“This is a section of road with a patchy safety history, with 26 crashes occurring between 2010 and 2015. The four-kilometre section to be bypassed will separate highway and local traffic, providing significant safety benefits and making it safer for all travellers throughout the region,” Mr Joyce said.
NSW Member for Upper Hunter Michael Johnsen said the bypass would provide an alternative route for motorists wanting to travel across Scone unrestricted and would be particularly important for emergency services.
“Long-haul heavy vehicle operators and other road users will be able to avoid rail crossings during their journeys and emergency services will have an unimpeded path when responding to emergencies west of Scone,” Mr Johnsen said.
Site access, fencing and environmental controls are currently underway. Earthworks are expected to start this month and the project is expected to be completed in late 2020, weather permitting.
Normal work times will be between 7am and 6pm on weekdays and between 8am and 1pm on Saturday.
The Scone Bypass is jointly funded by the Australian and NSW Governments, with the Australian Government contributing $65 million and the NSW Government contributing $72 million.