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NSW Government to build Australia’s longest road tunnel under the Blue Mountains

Australia’s longest road tunnel under the Blue Mountains to be built with drivers going underground for 11km

  • The stretch of road between Blackheath and Mount Victoria could cost $8billion
  • Regional Roads Minister Paul Toole said it would be ‘Northconnex but better’
  • NSW Government has given $2.5b for upgrades on the Great Western Highway

The NSW Government is set to build Australia’s longest road tunnel under the Blue Mountains.

The 11km stretch of tunnel between Blackheath and Mount Victoria could end up ballooning costing $8billion.

Regional Roads Minister Paul Toole said the tunnel, which forms part of the Great Western Highway upgrade, would be ‘Northconnex but better’ for motorists bound for the state’s central-west.

The 11km stretch of road between Blackheath and Mount Victoria could end up ballooning out to $8billion

The 11km stretch of road between Blackheath and Mount Victoria could end up ballooning out to $8billion

The announcement comes on the back of heavy delays on Blue Mountains roads over the Easter Long Weekend

The announcement comes on the back of heavy delays on Blue Mountains roads over the Easter Long Weekend

The announcement comes on the back of heavy delays on Blue Mountains roads over the Easter Long Weekend

The Berejiklian Government has given the project $2.5b for upgrades on the Great Western Highway between Katoomba and Lithgow, but Mr Toole said it isn't enough

The Berejiklian Government has given the project $2.5b for upgrades on the Great Western Highway between Katoomba and Lithgow, but Mr Toole said it isn't enough

The Berejiklian Government has given the project $2.5b for upgrades on the Great Western Highway between Katoomba and Lithgow, but Mr Toole said it isn’t enough

‘We’re very committed to actually seeing these two tunnels being connected,’ Mr Toole.

‘To do this would be a history making project, to do this is going to be an absolute game changer.’

The announcement comes on the back of heavy delays on Blue Mountains roads over the Easter Long Weekend. 

‘The traffic that we see backing up only reiterates the need for a safer and a more reliable connection over the mountains, and that’s exactly why we’re going to deliver this,’ Mr Toole said.

The Berejiklian Government has given the project $2.5b for upgrades on the Great Western Highway between Katoomba and Lithgow, but Mr Toole said it isn’t enough.   

Deputy Premier John Barilaro said despite the proposal being complex and ambitious,’ the government is ‘working hard to make it happen’.

The multi-billion-dollar tunnel would have bypassed the nearly 200-year-old Victoria Pass – a dual carriageway prone to heavy congestion during peak periods – on the range’s western side.

Regional Roads Minister Paul Toole (right) said the tunnel would be 'Northconnex but better' while Deputy Premier John Barilaro (left) said the government is 'working hard to make it happen'

Regional Roads Minister Paul Toole (right) said the tunnel would be 'Northconnex but better' while Deputy Premier John Barilaro (left) said the government is 'working hard to make it happen'

Regional Roads Minister Paul Toole (right) said the tunnel would be ‘Northconnex but better’ while Deputy Premier John Barilaro (left) said the government is ‘working hard to make it happen’

The 4km and 4.5km tunnels at Blackheath and Mount Victoria will form part of the Great Western Highway duplication project to reduce the level of traffic that run through the Blue Mountains. 

During the Easter period, it took motorists an extra two hours to cross the Blue Mountains because of heavy traffic.

He said large drilling machines are already boring holes into the ground near the highway to find suitable entry points for the tunnels. 

Construction on the two separate tunnels is expected to start in 2022. 

The road between Katoomba and Lithgow will also be duplicated to create a four-five lane highway.


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bourbiza

Bourbiza Mohamed. Writer and Political Discourse Analysis.

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