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Posted on 13/07/2020
The $4.3 billion M5 tunnel between Beverly Hills and St Peters in NSW is now open and operational, following the recent completion of other large construction projects.
New South Wales Premier, Gladys Berejiklian, said final safety checks had been carried out on the operational section of the tunnel, which will help get the Southern Sydney region mobilised again.
“Motorists will be able to travel from Beverly Hills to St Peters in around ten minutes, while the project will ease congestion on the M5 East, saving up to half an hour on journeys between Liverpool and Sydney’s south during the peak,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“We have already seen the huge difference that the New M4 project has made for Western Sydney, and we expect similar time savings on the new M5 tunnels.
“In the first few weeks we expect drivers to take their time to get used to the changes, before seeing the full benefit of the project.”
The Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure, Mr. Alan Tudge, said approximately 18,000 workers had been involved throughout the lifetime of the construction.
“WestConnex is being delivered in four major stages, including the New M4, the New M5 tunnels and the M4-M5 Link and Rozelle Interchange, opening in 2023,” Mr Tudge said.
“When complete, WestConnex will provide drivers with a 33km, traffic-light free network.”
Andrew Constance, New South Wales Minister for Roads, commented that clear signs, including electronic messages and lane markings have been put in place to give drivers plenty of notice for the time that tolls will come into effect.
“We’re encouraging drivers to plan ahead and allow extra travel time, particularly around Marsh Street and the King Georges Road off ramps, which are the last exits before the M5 East and New M5 tunnel tolls for motorists,” Mr Constance said.
“Follow the signs and make a decision early to be in the correct lane. If you miss these signs and make a wrong turn, you should always continue driving until you find a safe location to stop and replan your trip. It is not safe to stop or reverse in a motorway or tunnel environment.
“As with any major transport infrastructure, it will take some time before drivers are accustomed to the changed conditions. We advise people to be mindful of safety and changes to road configurations.”
With the ever-evolving coronavirus situation, the WestConnex tunnel and the subsequent jobs created by the project will help the NSW economy and construction sector to recover.
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