Upgrade to be ‘faster and safer'

THE upgrade to the Pacific Hwy between Woolgoolga and Ballina will improve road safety and traffic flow, reduce travel times and provide easier access to and from the highway for local traffic, the RTA claims.

Yesterday it released its concept plan for the upgrade of the 155km stretch of road that will include four upgrade planning projects: Woolgoolga to Wells Crossing, Wells Crossing to Iluka Road, Iluka Road to Woodburn and Woodburn to Ballina.

RTA Pacific Hwy general manager Bob Higgins invited the public to comment on the plan.

"The upgrade will provide 155 kilometres of four-lane divided road, starting around six kilometres north of Woolgoolga and ending about six kilometres south of Ballina," Mr Higgins said.

"The concept design includes 10 interchanges to provide access to and from the highway, major bridges crossing the Clarence and Richmond rivers and service roads to maintain local access and wildlife crossings to encourage animals to travel over and under the upgraded highway. The new road will have a minimum one-in-20 year flood immunity across the major floodplains and a minimum one-in-100 year flood immunity everywhere else."

The RTA has unveiled an online way for the community to look at a map of the concept design.

A web-based tool will enable people to go online and see a map of the project which outlines all its features.

The tool allows comments to be posted on the map about various parts of the concept design. These comments will be considered as part of the consultation.

It will be available at the RTA's Pacific Hwy upgrade website at www.rta.nsw.gov.au/pacific from Monday, October 10.

Comments about the concept design can also be submitted by email to w2balliance@skm.com.au, by mail to Community Relations Manager, Woolgoolga to Ballina Upgrade Alliance, PO Box 164, St Leonards NSW 1590 or by calling the project's toll free information line on 1800 778 900.

Comments must be received by close of business on November 4.

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