Gwydir Highway flood mitigation project completed
A $7.1 million project to improve flood immunity on the Gwydir Highway in northern NSW has been completed, providing a more reliable connection for communities and road users on this key Northern NSW road link.
Transport for NSW Regional Director West Alistair Lunn said the newly built highway at the flood-prone Washpool area, about 17 kilometres east of Moree, was now open to traffic.
“This upgrade will allow the highway to better cope with extreme flood events, reducing closure times and traffic impacts, which means we can keep locals, tourists and freight operators moving,” Mr Lunn said.
“It’s a remarkable achievement to have this completed and opened to traffic after overcoming many challenges during its almost three years of construction, including COVID-19 restrictions and major flood events during construction.
“The Gwydir Highway is a significant east-west link for northern NSW, connecting the inland plains to the New England area.
“The completion of this project means we can keep essential goods moving and keep local communities connected during those inevitable wet weather events.”
Road upgrade works associated with the project included raising and widening the highway with 1.5 metre-wide sealed shoulders, upgrading roadside drainage and installing safety barriers, and line marking, which will improve safety for motorists and reduce ongoing maintenance costs.
Up to 10 workers remained on site while the culvert work was underway, while Moree Plains Shire Council delivered the associated road upgrades on behalf of Transport for NSW.
“We have delivered one hundred metres of pavement on either side of the bridge-sized culvert including safety barriers, signage and flood level markers,” Mr Lunn said.
“Crews poured an impressive 600 cubic metres of reinforced concrete to complete this flood mitigation work.”
Culverts were built downstream under traffic conditions, with motorists diverted along a sealed two-way side track on the southern upstream side of the highway.
This side track will be removed in early 2024.
More information on the Washpool flood mitigation project can be found at nswroad.work/washpool.