More work on the way for Thunderbolts Way

Published on 24 November 2020

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Safety improvements along a 2km section of Thunderbolts Way at Mares Run will kick off at the end of the month, complementing a series of upgrades along this important freight transport route.

The section currently being targeted is located around 55km north of Gloucester, and extends from Carsons lookout through to the top of Giro mountain. Along with upgrading the existing road pavement to finish with an asphalt overlay, the scope of works includes rehabilitation of road shoulders, drainage improvements, upgrading guardrail, and line-marking.

“Thunderbolts Way is an important regional road that links Walcha and Gloucester through to Newcastle and Sydney”, explained Daniel Park, MidCoast Council’s Manager of Operations (North). “Improving road safety for the local motorists, primary producers, haulage companies, tourists and bike riders who use Thunderbolts Way is an on-going focus, and this project is one of many that will roll out over comings years”.

The works at Mares Run are scheduled to begin next Monday 30 November and will continue over seven weeks, weather permitting, for completion early-February 2021. While crews will be on-site between 7am and 4pm Monday to Friday, reduced speed limits will be in place at all times - including outside work hours – for the duration of the works. Lane closures will be required at times, and traffic control will be in place.

“These projects also give us an opportunity to look to the future, with works designed to provide durability”, Daniel added. “We use materials and techniques that not only extend the life of the road, but reduce on-going maintenance costs”.

Member for Upper Hunter Michael Johnsen said the project was being delivered by the NSW Government’s Fixing Country Roads program, which aims to unlock the economic potential of regional NSW.

“This will deliver important benefits for all regional road users – from passengers to producers and from heavy truck drivers to the local school bus,” Mr Johnsen said.

“Projects like this are important in supporting the regional freight task in NSW, which is expected to increase by 12 percent to 286 million tonnes by 2036.”

Motorists are asked to be alert to changed traffic conditions, observe all signage and directions from road crews, and to travel with caution in the area. Delays can be expected during the day when lane closures are in place.

This project is part of the Thunderbolts Way Corridor Strategy, funded through the NSW Government's Fixing Country Roads program. Additional funding has been provided through the $100M Road Upgrade Package (funded by the NSW Government in association with Council), part of Council’s commitment to improving the roads that connect our communities.

For more information about the Thunderbolts Way Corridor Strategy, visit www.midcoast.nsw.gov.au/thunderboltsway. To find out more about other roadworks taking place across the region, visit www.midcoast.nsw.gov.au/roads