NSW M1 Pacific Motorway extension project reaches new milestone

Monica Gameng   |   July 8, 2022
M1 Pacific Motorway (cr: Transport for NSW)

The M1 Pacific Motorway extension to Raymond Terrace project in New South Wales takes another step closer to being built with the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) submission report released to the public for viewing. 

The submission report highlights how the project design is shaped by community feedback that was gathered during the EIS public exhibition last year. 

“This project will create more efficient and reliable journeys by bypassing five sets of traffic lights and removing about 25,000 vehicles a day from key congestion and merge points between Newcastle and Maitland – saving nine minutes in travel time. 

“The submissions report is another indication of the level of community involvement in helping us to deliver this 15-kilometre four-lane road, which is set to transform the Hunter region. 

“We’ve already responded to feedback by modifying the original concept design to include improved access to the Hunter Region Botanic Gardens and a centralised interchange at Old Punt Road,” Transport for NSW Director, Region North Anna Zycki said. 

dhymy5Artist impression of Tomago interchange (source: NSW Government)

The project will also now include improved access to the northbound M1 Motorway entry ramp at Tomago, allowing road users from Newcastle to access the M1 Motorway sooner. 

With the release of the submission report, the Department of Planning and Environment will be able to finalise its assessment as well as prepare an environmental assessment report for the project. The Minister for Planning will then decide whether to give the project the go-ahead. If approved, the Minister will outline any conditions that will apply to the delivery of the project. 

“The Australian and NSW Governments have worked together to provide $2.1 billion to deliver the M1 extension and the Hexham Straight widening projects – the scale of which has never been seen before in the Hunter. 

“By upgrading this vital commuter, freight and tourism link, we’re going to leave a lasting legacy of better-connected communities, improved safety and reduced local congestion,” Ms Zycki said. 

These projects are anticipated to create about 2,700 direct and indirect jobs, providing a much-needed boost to the local economy. 

The M1 Pacific Motorway extension to Raymond Terrace project is now at the final pre-construction stage with the EIS submission report awaiting formal approval, keeping the project on track to beginning construction by next year. 

Feedback from the EIS released for public consultation last year covered a range of issues such as noise, biodiversity, traffic and transport. 

“I thank all those community members who provided feedback and invite everyone to view the submissions report to learn how Transport for NSW has responded to the topics raised. 

“The M1 Pacific Motorway extension to Raymond Terrace will make our region an even better place to live, work and visit. The release of the report demonstrates that we’re on track to commence early works later this year, following approval,” Ms Zycki said. 

For those interested, the submissions report is available for viewing online as well as at the Department of Planning and Environment’s major project portal. 

jaw7e1Artist impression of Old Punt Road at Tomago (source: NSW Government)

The M1 Pacific Motorway extension to Raymond Terrace project will feature: 

  • A 15-kilometre motorway comprised of a four-lane divided road (two in each direction) 
  • Motorway access from the existing road network via four new interchanges at: 
    • Black Hill – connecting to the M1 Pacific Motorway 
    • Tarro – connection and upgrade (six lanes) to the New England Highway between John Renshaw Drive and the existing Tarro interchange at Anderson Drive 
    • Tomago – connection to the Pacific Highway and Old Punt Road 
    • Raymond Terrace – connection to the Pacific Highway 
  • A 2.6-kilometre viaduct over the Hunter Region floodplain including new bridge crossings over the Hunter River, the Main North Rail Line, and the New England Highway 
  • Bridge structures over local waterways at Tarro and Raymond Terrace, and an overpass for Masonite Road in Heatherbrae 
  • Connections and modifications to the adjoining local road network 
  • Traffic management facilities and features 
  • Roadside furniture including safety barriers, signage, fauna fencing and crossings and street lighting 
  • Adjustment of waterways, including at Purgatory Creek at Tarro and a tributary of Viney Creek 
  • Environmental management measures, including surface water quality control measures 
  • Adjustment, protection and/or relocation of existing utilities 
  • Walking and cycling considerations, allowing for existing and proposed cycleway route access 
  • Permanent and temporary property adjustments and property access refinements 
  • Construction activities, including establishment and use of temporary ancillary facilities, temporary access tracks, haul roads, batching plants, temporary wharves, soil treatment and environmental controls 

Source: Transport for NSW (1, 2); NSW Government – M1 Pacific Motorway extension to Raymond Terrace; NSW Government – NSW Planning Portal; Infrastructure Magazine 

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Monica Gameng
As Felix's Marketing Assistant since 2015, Monica is responsible for researching and sharing new and progressing projects within the construction and mining sectors in Australia. It's no surprise that Monica has her finger on the pulse of Australian major projects given she has produced more than 1,000 posts. She truly is an industry expert.
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