Great Western Highway upgrade drives jobs bonanza

The NSW Government has announced the Great Western Highway upgrade will support an additional 1,400 jobs, taking the total number of FTEs to be supported by the project during construction to 3,900.

NSW Deputy Premier Paul Toole said the increased jobs figure was a major win for local residents and business operators in Lithgow, the Blue Mountains and surrounds.

“We have a new jobs figure for this mammoth project – 3,900 jobs at the peak of construction, which will bolster the building industry here locally for the next decade,” MrToole said. 

“The history-making Great Western Highway upgrade between Katoomba and Lithgow, featuring the country’s longest ever road tunnel, offers a unique opportunity to develop local skills that will deliver economic benefits for many years to come.

“It means thousands of workers will be able to drive this highway once complete, knowing they’ve helped deliver one of the most important road upgrades in our State’s history to ensure safer, faster trips between the Central West and East Coast.

“The NSW Government is delivering a record $110.4 billion infrastructure pipeline, building the projects that improve the daily lives of families and creating thousands of jobs.”

NSW Minister for Regional Roads and Transport Sam Farraway said the government is focused on creating local employment pathways and upskilling local workforces.

“We are collaborating with industry and training providers to train up local people, to grow the local construction workforce and to leave a skills legacy that will endure far beyond the life of the upgrade program,” Mr said.

“Last month we hosted an industry briefing at Lithgow Workers’ Club to give local businesses an insight into the exciting opportunities available to them.

“This included requirements they must meet to be part of the upgrade program and, in turn, how the upgrade program will drive economic growth and provide opportunities for local people and businesses.

“NSW is building the longest tunnel in the country - it’s record breaking, it’s history making and will revolutionise travel from the east to the west.

“It’s time to make the Western Highway Great again and that is exactly what this upgrade will do.”

The upgrade will support more than 3,900 full time employees during the peak five-year construction period from 2022-23 to 2026-27.