Mammoth slope remediation task completed in the Capertee Valley


A $13 million slope remediation project at Capertee Valley in the NSW central west has been completed, after a landslide damaged an extended edge section of the Castlereagh Highway and the railway line below the road corridor.

Heavy rain in October 2022 caused the landslide at Pearson’s Lookout, three kilometres south of Capertee, compromising a 50-metre section of pavement in the southbound lane and toppling a power pole.

Transport for NSW Regional Director West Alistair Lunn said it had been a mammoth task to repair the highway and slope.

“This has been a complicated project from start to finish, involving the incremental excavation of loose material and temporary stabilisation using rock nails, before permanent support infrastructure was built,” Mr Lunn said.

“That permanent support involved the construction of a terramesh wall downslope from the road, which consisted of layers of steel mesh and compacted backfill material which was used to rebuild the damaged slope.

“All the while, the southbound lane was closed for 11 months so crews could work safely and guide traffic through the site in both directions under single lane arrangements.

“While monitoring the slope, our crews identified further cracking in the pavement near the landslip area which required an extension of the initial scope of work.

“As well as the slope remediation, we were able to widen the impacted section of the Castlereagh Highway to 11 metres, increase the shoulder widths and improve drainage, all of which will improve the safety along this section of the Castlereagh Highway.”

Transport for NSW engaged Pan Civil to conduct the remediation work along the 250 metres impacted by the landslip.

The road pavement was also replaced and crews installed a kerb and a safety barrier.

“This was a specialised job which required specific equipment to negotiate the cliff face for the team to carry out repairs, including a Menzi Muck Walking Excavator, which we call a spider excavator,” Mr Lunn said.

“We also used a 13-tonne and two 23-tonne excavators, dump trucks, drill rigs and grout pumps.

“As a result, almost 12 months on from the wet weather event which caused widespread damage, we have smoother, safer and more efficient journeys for all motorists travelling through Pearson’s Lookout.”