Sunday, 2 September 2018

PACIFIC HIGHWAY UPGRADE: Time for the NSW MP for Clarence and Federal MP for Page to front their respective ministers and insist this cost-shifting onto local ratepayers does not occur

Clarence Valley Council, media release, 27 August 2018:

Mayor: Jim Simmons LOCKED BAG 23 GRAFTON NSW 2460
General Manager: Ashley Lindsay Telephone: (02) 6643 0200
Fax: (02) 6642 7647


August 27, 2018

Some highway concerns remain for Clarence Valley Council

Clarence Valley Mayor, Jim Simmons, talks with Ulmarra residents today about their concerns about some of the arrangements that will be in place when the new highway opens.

THE Clarence Valley Council will call on the State and Federal governments to address a range of serious safety, access and cost issues related to the construction of the new Pacific Highway.

Council last week agreed to lobby the Deputy Prime Minister (as Minister For Infrastructure and Transport); the Federal Minister for Regional Development, Territories and Local Government; the Member for Page; the NSW Premier; the NSW Minister for Roads; the NSW Minister for Local Government, and; the Member for Clarence in order to have some proposed arrangements relating to the new highway addressed.

Councillors were told there was a planned exit from the new highway at Eight Mile Lane, Glenugie, but it was not designed to cater for B-Doubles. That would mean many B-Doubles wanting to travel into or out of Grafton would have to use the proposed interchange at Tyndale.

Council’s works and civil director, Troy Anderson, said the planned B-Double route to and from Grafton would result in large numbers of B-Doubles travelling along the existing Pacific Highway and through Ulmarra and Tyndale.

“The communities of Tyndale and Ulmarra and all residences in between will still be subjected to significant B-Double movements through their villages,” he said.
“The residents in those areas have expressed concern about safety and noise.”

A further concern was that the Roads and Maritime Service (RMS) maintenance of Eight Mile Lane.

“Despite a motorway exit and entry being planned at Eight Mile Lane, there are no plans to change its local road classification, leaving funding for maintenance and any upgrade works up to local ratepayers,” he said.

“From a road safety and capacity perspective, it is recommended this road is upgraded prior to thecompletion of the new Pacific Highway and that required works are funded by RMS not the Clarence Valley community.”

Mr Anderson said that once the new highway was operational, RMS planned to change the classification of the existing highway between Tyndale and Maclean to that of a local road, which would leave Clarence Valley ratepayers responsible for the cost of its maintenance and any upgrades.

“A more logical extension would be to extend the Gwydir Highway through Grafton to Maclean so these two major centres are connected via a State road network,” he said.
“The section of existing highway between Maclean and Tyndale is in poor condition and, being adjacent to the river for most of this section, has significant associated risks.

“A section of the existing highway has previously slipped into the river, causing major disruption and costly repairs. This overhanging burden should not be forced onto ratepayers of the Clarence Valley.

“These matters will create considerable cost shifting to council through necessary road upgrades and increased maintenance.

“In addition, a large number of residents will be still subject to B- Double movements close to their residences and through the villages of Tyndale and Ulmarra.”

A group of Ulmarra residents beside the Pacific Highway as a large semi-trailer passes.

Release ends.

No comments: