The final piece of Batemans Bay’s missing link road received a multi-million dollar boost on Tuesday, with NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian urging Roads and Maritime Services to ‘get cracking’ on the South Batemans Bay Link Road.
During a visit to Batemans Bay on January 8, the Premier committed $30 million to connect the South Batemans Bay Link Road to the Princes Highway, enabling motorists to bypass the Bay CBD.
Speaking at a media conference on Glenella Road on Tuesday, Ms Berejiklian said planning for the missing link had been completed and urged the RMS to move quickly on the project.
“My message to the RMS is to get cracking. The money is there and we want this done as quickly as possible,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“It’s not just investing in half a kilometre of road, it’s providing support to Batemans Bay proper.”
She said the development would help alleviate traffic congestion in central Batemans Bay, particularly at peak times.
“When congestion gets so bad in the CBD during the tourist months in particular, locals and everybody else will have a safe way to access the Princes Highway," she said.
Mr Constance said the project would help improve safety on the notorious ‘mad mile’ where the link road will connect to the Princes Highway – and be a step towards the goal of a dual-carriageway, divided highway from Nowra to the border proposed by the Fix It Nowcampaign.
“The ability to slow the traffic down there and have an appropriate intersection with the highway is key,” Mr Constance said.
“We’ve seen a lot of tragedies there over the years. This connection point takes the pressure off and slows the traffic down.
“At the moment there’s a lot of discussions happening internally on the Fix It Now campaign, and in particular what we’re working towards in terms of duplication of the highway south of the Jervis Bay turn off.
“We’re very focused on that, and fixing up these sections is part of it.”
He said the funding commitment would help “open up Batemans Bay” and provide a boost to employment and housing development in the area.
“It’s a very important project given the opportunities that lay ahead in terms of jobs, housing and improving the livability of the Eurobodalla,” he said.
Eurobodalla Shire Mayor Liz Innes said improving safety was essential, especially during times of increased holiday traffic.
“At this time of year, we all have the pressure of enormous amounts of visitors coming to our area and the traffic congestion that that brings with it. This will go and incredibly long way to alleviating those pressures along with the incredible bridge that is being built,” Cr Innes said.
“What a way to start the New Year off for Eurobodalla and Batemans Bay in particular.”
The council’s infrastructure director, Warren Sharpe, said he was “really stoked”.
“A lot of the planning work for the connection has already been done on this project,” he said.
“We’ve worked on the RMS with various routes for the Princes Highway, and various intersection formats for the Princes Highway as well.
“This project will address the issue of road safety from south of Cranbrook Road up through the intersection.
“That area has been receiving lots of serious accidents, so the $30 million is both for the last bit of road here, the intersection, and fixing that first bit of the Mad Mile.
“We are really stoked.
“The final planning and construction will be done by the RMS, rather than the council. The RMS have treated us as a partner, and we’ve been able to have that local input.”