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Thursday, June 24, 2021

Community input valuable on Hexham straight widening

Plans to widen the Pacific Highway at Hexham are progressing well with the community and stakeholders providing valuable input into the initial design, according to Transport for NSW.

The NSW Government is hoping to advance this vital project as soon as possible.

Transport for NSW director region north Anna Zycki said the proposed widening of the highway from four to six lanes, between the Newcastle Inner City Bypass and the New England Highway, would improve travel times and safety for the road, which is used by 50,000 motorists a day.

“We’re now carefully considering all feedback received for this project which is jointly-funded by the Australian and NSW governments,” she explained.

“The Australian Government has committed $1.6 billion and the NSW Government $400 million to build both the Hexham Straight and M1 to Raymond Terrace projects.”  

Ms Zycki said the Hexham Straight proposal involved upgrading six kilometres of the existing highway from two to three lanes in each direction and building a new bridge crossing at Ironbark Creek.

“We asked the community how we could best improve access and connectivity at a local level,” she stated.

“And, with a total of 45 submissions received between December and February, they have delivered.

“Key issues raised included suggestions to improve access for residents and motorists along old Maitland Road, Shamrock, Fenwick and Merchant streets as well as feedback on improving traffic flow at the intersection of the Newcastle Inner City Bypass and Maitland Road.

“There were also suggestions to consider off-road cycle paths, including dedicated separated shared pathways, and improving access for northbound cyclists over the Hexham Bridge.

“We’d like to thank everyone who took the time to provide feedback.”

Work will continue to develop the Hexham Straight concept design and environmental assessment, taking into account the recent community responses.

Transport for NSW plans to display the environmental assessment for public feedback later this year.

Residents can find more information on the Hexham Straight improvement project by visiting www.nswroads.work/hexham

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