Urgent funding to connect the Batemans Bay Link Road to the Princes Highway is on the wishlist for the coming NSW Budget, Eurobodalla Shire Council says.
The shire's infrastructure director Warren Sharpe said the intersection and link road would not only be “economic drivers”, but would address major safety issues.
“We would like to see an announcement of funding in the June 19 Budget for the detailed design to be completed,” Mr Sharpe told Fairfax Media.
He is calling on the intersection upgrade, along with major safety works on the Princes Highway south of Batemans Bay, known as the Mad Mile, to be funded as a “matter of urgency”.
“Council has an $800 million land development that is dependent on this link road connection. That is a significant economic driver, and hopefully the governments will recognise that,” Mr Sharpe said.
“A big part of the cost is addressing the road safety issues on Princes Highway south of Batemans Bay; in addressing those they can make provisions for the link road intersection.
“The concept design is done, but we need it to go from project ready to shovel ready.”
This week, the NSW Government announced $10 million for highway safety improvements between Nowra and Batemans Bay.
Mr Sharpe said the state government had given $10 million to the link road project in 2014 to get it to its current stage, however more was needed to link the Surf Beach bypass to the highway.
“The section of highway from the Kings Highway intersection to Mogo is a hot spot they must treat, the Mad Mile in particular, and the link road,” Mr Sharpe said.
“They shouldn’t be sitting too far down the list of priority, and should be funded as matter of urgency.
“Our link road section is all but complete; we are working on the roundabout on George Bass Drive.
“We have a locked gate on western end and that is to prevent people coming out at the highway intersection because it is unsafe. I would like to see a major highway upgrade south of Batemans Bay integrated with the link road intersection.”
Mr Sharpe said Bega MP Andrew Constance was in discussion with state Roads, Maritime and Freight Minister Melinda Pavey about the issue. He said the federal government also had a role to play.
“We are starting to talk to Opposition candidates in the lead up to the election as well,” Mr Sharpe said.
A highway similar to that from Gerringong to Bomaderry should be replicated from Nowra south, Mr Sharpe said.
He urged the state and federal governments to work “in partnership” to deliver that standard of road further south.