For the South Coast community, the growth of tourism is a major strategic focus and the ability to attract more tourists underpins the transport infrastructure needs. Our community consultation will make a real and positive difference so we are asking for your support to join our campaign!
Introduction to the “Kings Highway Road Upgrades”
The Kings Highway is the primary and shortest east-west transport link from Canberra, Queanbeyan and Goulburn to the coast at Batemans Bay. More than 65 kilometres shorter than the Braidwood to Nowra connection via Main Road 92, the Kings Highway will remain a primary arterial feeder for freight and tourism traffic to the Eurobodalla region and Milton/Ulladulla.
The Kings Highway is a critical freight and tourism route to connect with Canberra city and the international gateway at Canberra airport, the Goulburn logistics centre, western Sydney, the proposed Badgerys Creek airport as well as two of the three city centres in the Sydney basin. This is further underpinned by the large non-resident ownership of property within Eurobodalla by people from the ACT and near environs (approximately 16.5%).
The visitor economy is worth an estimated $464M to the Eurobodalla economy. Based on representative surveys of the 1.55 million visitors to the Eurobodalla, approximately two thirds of visitors currently travel via the Kings Highway. The traffic volumes continue to grow (by more than 50% since the early 2000’s) and the weekly peak nature of flows across Friday to Sunday is unusual for a rural highway, requiring additional consideration of overtaking lanes to ensure safe travel.
The Kings Highway route has few impediments to opening up a 26m HML B-double access to Eurobodalla. Upon completion of the new Nelligen bridge (commenced August 2018), this will be limited to just two corners on the Clyde Mountain. These corners must be treated to address key road safety outcomes including for standard semi-trailers who currently cross to the incorrect side of the highway to negotiate the corners.
Project Description and Proposal
Eurobodalla proposes the following projects between Batemans Bay and Braidwood to progress the Kings Highway to meet the current and future transport needs of the Canberra region. The upgrade of the Kings Highway has been identified as a priority action for the South East Australian Transport Strategy Inc (SEATS), as a key east-west link in the NSW Transport 2056 document and in the Far South Coast Economic Regional Development Strategy 2018-22.
It is critical that the Roads and Maritime Services are funded immediately to secure the route corridor from Batemans Bay to Braidwood.
KH 1 – East of Nelligen Bridge (Stage 2)
This project involves the reconstruction and realignment of a 1.2km section of the Kings Highway east of Nelligen Bridge. The design for the project is complete. The works will deliver a consistent alignment from Nelligen to Batemans Bay. The project will greatly improve road safety, including the site of a previous fatal crash. Land acquisition is required from Forestry Corporation NSW.
KH2 – East of Old Bolaro Road
This project involves the realignment and widening of over 1.6km of the Kings Highway east of Old Bolaro Road. This project addresses the unsuitable road alignment, provides width for improved freight movement and improved road safety, including sites of previous serious crashes (including one fatal). There are direct conflicts with proposed rural small holdings that require urgent resolution prior to dwellings being built.
KH3 – Dinner Creek to Old Bolaro Road
This project covers a 6.7km section of the Kings Highway from Dinner Creek to Old Bolaro Road. The works involve realigning many of the sub-standard curves to a 100km/hr standard highway, with the provision for an additional westbound and eastbound uphill overtaking lane. This project will significantly improve road safety outcomes (including the site of serious injury and fatal crashes) and improve overtaking lane opportunities. Designed with the end in mind, this project has the potential to win significant rock for proposed coastal protection works in Eurobodalla, whilst delivering the alignment needed for the highway.
KH4 – Misty Mountain Road
This project covers a 2.5km section of the Kings Highway either side of the Misty Mountain Road intersection. The proposal involves realigning this section of the highway to a 100km/hr standard. The current alignment is sub-standard and the works will significantly improve road safety. This project involves the installation of an improved overtaking lane opportunity, which would also allow optimisation of overtaking lane opportunities slightly further west (near Leachey Flat).
KH5 – East of Pooh Bear Corner
This project involves the widening of the existing road formation to address current road safety issues for truck drivers and the community. Once rectified, this would remove the 26m B-double impediment from the Kings Highway.
KH6 – Bettinis Corner (West of Pooh Bear Corner)
This project involves the widening of the existing road formation to address current road safety issues for truck drivers and the community. Once rectified, this would remove the 26m B-double impediment from the Kings Highway. This may require a short viaduct across Bettinis corner. Improvement of this corner would address the significant number of crashes occurring at the three back to back sharp curves at this site and allow a much better transition of speed into Pooh Bear corner.
KH7 – West of Northangera Bridge to Mongarlowe Bridge
This project continues the good work undertaken to date west of River Forest Road for approximately 4.5km. The project would remove the need for the 80km/hr speed restriction restoring freight efficiency via a 100km/hr speed zone. The project involves:
i) Upgrade of the Kings Highway to and across Mongarlowe River bridge
ii) Provision of an additional westbound overtaking lane west of Mongarlowe River bridge, taking advantage of the natural uphill run
iii) Extension of the eastbound overtaking lane east of Northangera Creek bridge to take advantage of the easy terrain and natural uphill run
iv) Realignment of the substandard curves west of Northangera Creek bridge.
These works improve highway capacity, address road safety and freight efficiency.
KH8 – East of Braidwood
This project involves installing protective fencing from just east of Braidwood to restore the 100km/hr speed zone, improving road safety outcomes, taking advantage of the excellent road alignment and improving freight efficiency. A suitable short transition of 80km/hr speed zone should be incorporated. This project is ‘low hanging fruit’ that should be undertaken immediately to remove driver frustration, which is shifted to more dangerous sections of the highway to the east.
Existing Conditions and Issues
- The Kings Highway requires reconstruction and realignment to greatly improve road safety
- Fix up unsuitable road alignment providing width for improved freight movement
- Realigning many of the sub-standard curves to a 100km/hr standard highway, with the provision for an additional westbound and eastbound uphill overtaking lane
- This project will significantly improve road safety outcomes (including the site of serious injury and fatal crashes) and improve overtaking lane opportunities
- Once rectified, this would remove the 26m B-double impediment from the Kings Highway.
- Remove the need for the 80km/hr speed restriction restoring freight efficiency via a 100km/hr speed zone
Potential Partnerships Government
Existing government partnerships include [insert]. There are potential for partnerships between Eurobodalla Shire Council and the New South Wales State Government through Transport for NSW and with the ACT Government through Transport Canberra. Additional partnerships exist with the Snowy Monaro Shire Council and the Queanbeyan Shire Council.
Potential Partnership Industries
Eurobodalla on the South Coast attracts 1.55 million visitors per year. The tourism sector will benefit through improved equity of access to South Coast attractions, townships and residential estates. Growth is expected to continue in the tourism area. The South Coast is increasingly been seen as a holiday destination for visitors from Central NSW and the ACT which will benefit with flow on effects to the local economy. Agricultural industry will benefit with freight efficiencies ensured in order to remain competitive with connections to Canberra and international markets.
Eurobodalla has an extensive crash history with [insert]
The Kings Highway Road Corridor planning has attracted significant local community support and engagement as well as extensive support from visitors and holiday home owners. This was highlighted through the Eurobodalla Shire’s “Advancing Eurobodalla: Economic Development Strategy 2019-2028″publication.
A significant cost component of tourism and industrial production is transport of people and product for processing and goods to market. Increased safety and reduced travel times will assist economic and social outcomes for the South East region. The Kings Highway Road Upgrade will significantly improve road safety and save road users crucial time per journey.
Letters of Endorsement
- Mayor of Eurobodalla Shire
- Chair of SEATS
- Owner of transport company
- Eurobodalla Shire Business Chamber