Good news for New South Wales motorists, with a significant boost to road funding in this week’s state budget.
An extra $5.1 billion has been allocated to road projects over the coming year, with major projects such as the Pacific and Princes Highways receiving a healthy cash boost.
NSW Roads Minister Duncan Gay said that the Pacific Highway in particular was a funding priority.
“This year’s budget includes $1 billion investment for the continued upgrade of the Pacific Highway to a four lane, divided road,” Mr Gay said.
“The NSW Government recognises the need to inject significant funds into rural and regional communities with major commitments to the Pacific and Princes highways and the Hunter Expressway.”
Other key funding commitments include $238 million for road safety and $62 million to help ease Sydney traffic congestion.
The Princes Highway will receive $115 million towards the crucial Gerringong upgrade and $19 million for the Berry Bypass.
WestConnex in Sydney will receive $2.7 billion over four year, with $553 million allocated for 2013/14. Other important projects include the Newell Highway, the Great Western Highway and Bells Line of Road.
The NRMA has welcomed the state budget, with President Wendy Machin saying that WestConnex in particular will deliver benefits that will last for generations.
"We are also pleased to see investment in Sydney metropolitan roads has more than doubled from last year's $240 million to $544 million in 2013/14," Ms Machin said.
"We are seeing more money spent on the Princes and Great Western Highways, however just like the Pacific Highway, too many lives have been lost on these dangerous roads and we encourage the Government to find ways to bring funding forward.”
Ms Machin said that fines, tolls, registration and weight tax have increased 5.8 per cent ($200 million), meaning that motorists are contributing $3.1 billion to help fund NSW roads.