Work starts on the $261 million upgrade of the Newell Highway between Narrabri and Moree

Several intersection upgrades and three new overtaking lanes make up the first major work starting on the largest ever pavement upgrade of the Newell Highway.

The work marks the start of the $261 million joint investment from the Australian and NSW governments to widen and strengthen 27.3 kilometres of road along four priority sections between Narrabri and Moree.

The upgrade involves building entirely new sections of road as well as five new overtaking lanes, two new heavy vehicle rest areas, intersection upgrades and multiple new bridge-sized culverts for improved drainage.

The work, led by contractor Fulton Hogan, has now commenced along the first two sections, including an eight-kilometre stretch about three kilometres south of Moree, and a 4.5-kilometre stretch about 46 kilometres north of Narrabri, through Bellata.

The Newell Highway heavy duty pavement upgrade forms part of the Australian and NSW governments’ $1.7 billion commitment to upgrading the longest highway with inland connections to both Victoria and Queensland.

Work is taking place Monday to Friday between 7am and 6pm, excluding public holidays, and on alternate weekends between 7am and 6pm for the duration of the project.

There will be some temporary traffic changes in place including local intersection and lane closures, traffic control including short stoppages and varying speed restrictions from 40 kilometres an hour during work hours.

More information on the Newell Highway heavy duty pavement upgrade can be found at

Quotes attributable to Federal Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Minister Catherine King:

“The Australian Government is committed to delivering resilient and reliable transport, which is exactly what this upgrade is all about. 

“Good infrastructure investment creates jobs, builds opportunity and unlocks economic growth, and I look forward to seeing local communities and motorists using this stretch of the Newell Highway reap the benefits as construction gets underway.”

Quotes attributable to NSW Regional Transport and Roads Minister Sam Farraway:

“The NSW Government is delivering a safer and stronger network with work now commenced on the Newell Highway between Narrabri and Moree.

“This upgrade will have significant benefits for motorists including reduced travel times, better access during and after wet weather and improved freight productivity.

“We are investing in what matters to our local community and making our network safer, to help make sure everyone out on our roads gets home safely – just one way we are securing a brighter future for NSW.”

Quotes attributable to NSW Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall:

“Employment opportunities to come from the project would significantly benefit both the Moree and Narrabri shires.

“This is a legacy project, with 640 jobs supported throughout the construction phase.

“With a commitment of 12 per cent Indigenous employment, the technical skills delivered to employees as a result of Newell Highway upgrade will ensure the economic benefits from the project are felt in all areas of the community.”

Quotes attributable to Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton: 

“The former Coalition Government invested $205.7 million into this major upgrade because we recognise how important this stretch of highway is to our nation’s productivity.

“This upgrade will complement the work currently happening on the Inland Rail between Narrabri and Moree and, once complete, will improve access to the future Moree Special Activation Precinct and Northern NSW Inland Port at Narrabri, helping our region unlock its full potential.”