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3 Achievements and business results

3.1 Delivering our infrastructure program

Our agency spent $3.87 billion from NSW's growth and improvement program this year to deliver major road transport projects and programs across NSW, including the Pacific Highway upgrade, WestConnex, NorthConnex, Western Sydney Infrastructure Plan, Easing Sydney's Congestion and Bridges for the Bush. These projects will be ongoing in the coming years.

2016‑17 results

  • $3.87 billion spent on delivering infrastructure
  • seven major road projects opened to traffic
  • 20 major road projects in delivery

We simultaneously manage more than 4,000 infrastructure projects across NSW roads and waterways. During the year, the following milestones were completed:

2016

July 2016

Dual carriageways for the Pacific Highway upgrade between Nambucca Heads and Urunga

September 2016

New England Highway, Maitland Roundabout upgrade - Stage 2 (east bound overpass at Church Street)

October 2016

McMahons Point wharf upgrade and the completion of wharf upgrade package one

Wyong Road, Enterprise Drive intersection upgrade, Chittaway Bay

November 2016

Richmond Road Stages 2 and 3, Townson Road to North of Garfield Road, Marsden Park in North West Sydney

December 2016

King Georges Road Interchange upgrade

2017

March 2017

Four-lane upgrade of Great Western Highway at Kelso

April 2017

Princes Highway upgrade, Foxground bypass section between Toolijooa Road and Austral Park Road

Great Western Highway, Hartley Valley safety works upgrade

May 2017

Werrington Arterial Road, M4 Motorway to the Great Western Highway

Forest Way Pedestrian Bridge, Northern Beaches Hospital road connectivity and network enhancements

June 2017

Old Wallgrove Road between Roberts Road and the M7 Motorway at Eastern Creek

Regional projects

Pacific Highway upgrade

The Pacific Highway upgrade is the largest regional road infrastructure project in Australia. The upgrade started in 1996 and is expected to open to traffic by 2020. The Australian and NSW governments have invested a total of $1.3 billion during the year, with $11.4 billion invested since the upgrade began. The project is creating significant employment opportunities for the local community. When completed it will improve road safety and provide significant travel time benefits.

Seventy per cent of the project is now complete with a further 161 kilometres under construction. All remaining sections are being prepared for major work to start later in 2017.

There are three key sections of work underway along the Pacific Highway, as discussed below:

Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour

Work to duplicate the highway between Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour is well progressed and the opening of the $780 million Nambucca Heads to Urunga project (including a bypass of Urunga) means a further 22 kilometres is now complete. The remaining 57 kilometres is well advanced and will progressively open to traffic in the second half of 2017 and early 2018.

Woolgoolga to Ballina

During the year work on the $4.36 billion Woolgoolga to Ballina project has significantly increased, with 104 of the 155 kilometres now under construction. Already, more than half of the total 14 million cubic metres of earthwork is complete.

The project crosses the Clarence and Richmond River floodplains and two major bridges are being built as part of the project. Major work started on the new bridge over the Clarence River at Harwood in August, which includes a 1.5 kilometre four lane bridge. A contract was awarded to design and build the new Richmond River bridge near Broadwater in June. When the upgrade is complete, travel time between Hexham and the Queensland border will have reduced from around nine and a half hours to less than seven hours for heavy vehicles, and from around eight and a half hours to six and a half hours for light vehicles.

Coffs Harbour bypass

Planning is also underway for the Coffs Harbour bypass with the concept design and environmental assessment being prepared for community consultation. During August and September, the preliminary concept design was displayed and geotechnical and field investigations were carried out throughout the year.

Highway Service Centres

Highway Service Centres on the Pacific Highway provide a wide range of services for travellers and encourages drivers to ‘stop, revive, survive', contributing significantly to travel safety and efficiency. The sites selected for Highway Services Centres are strategically positioned at regular intervals, and most are close to bypassed towns so the economic benefits can remain with those centres in accordance with our Highway Service Centres policy.

In December 2016, a service centre was opened on the northbound highway at Chinderah, near the NSW/Queensland border. The Chinderah site is one of a number of service centres being developed along the Pacific Highway as part of a wider program, including other locations such as Ballina and Nambucca Heads.

Princes Highway upgrade

We are continuing to upgrade the Princes Highway between Sydney and the Victorian border. Key achievements in 2016‑17 include:

  • the Dignams Creek realignment on the Princes Highway south of Narooma commenced construction in April 2017. This section of the Princes Highway is steep and has historically been unsafe. To improve road safety in the area, a new two kilometre section of the highway is being developed to comply with current road design standards
  • the Foxground bypass section as part of the $580 million Foxground and Berry bypass project opened to traffic in April 2017. The Berry bypass section opened to traffic in July 2017 with overall project completion on track for the end of 2017, six months ahead of schedule.

Case study

Foxground bypass section from Toolijooa Road to the north of Austral Park Interchange

Construction of five kilometres of the Princes Highway was required as the existing corridor (Foxground Bends) could not be upgraded to meet current design, safety and traffic efficiency requirements. The Foxground bypass provides a safer option for road users by addressing the high crash history and poor road safety record of this section of the Princes Highway.

The Foxground bypass provides a number of significant customer and community benefits including:

  • improved road safety for motorists on the Princes Highway and local roads in the area
  • reduced crashes on the Princes Highway particularly with the bypass of the Foxground Bends
  • improved travel times and traffic flow for motorists on the Princes Highway between Toolijooa Road and Austral Park Road
  • improved road freight travel movements and supporting regional and local economic development
  • generated local employment opportunities
  • improved safety for fauna with installation of wildlife crossings.

Hunter and Central Coast roads

Planning work continues on the $280 million Rankin Park to Jesmond section of the Newcastle Inner City Bypass, which is the fifth section of the bypass. In 2016‑17 the Environmental Impact Assessment for the bypass was publically displayed.

The final stage of the $51 million Maitland roundabouts upgrade was completed with a new overpass opening to traffic in September 2016 as part of the New England Highway upgrade. These upgrades have improved safety and traffic flow.

As part of the upgrade package for the M1 Pacific Motorway, the construction contract was awarded in March 2017 to widen the motorway between Wyong Road at Tuggerah and the Doyalson Link Road. The upgrade involves widening 12 kilometres of motorway to provide three lanes in each direction and rebuilding a nine kilometre section to provide a smoother and more durable surface.

Newell Highway upgrade

The Newell Highway is the longest highway in NSW, stretching over 1,060 kilometres from the Victorian border at Tocumwal to the Queensland border at Goondiwindi. It is also a National Highway. The NSW Government has committed an additional $500 million under Rebuilding NSW for the upgrading of the Newell Highway. Progress in 2016‑17 includes:

  • the preferred option for the upgrade of the Newell Highway at Parkes was announced in December 2016. The bypass will improve freight efficiency and productivity, access for high productivity vehicles (double road trains, B-triples, AB triples) safety at rail crossings and for pedestrians and traffic flow in Parkes. Feedback from the community on the proposed option was received in early 2017 and planning for the bypass is continuing
  • work is continuing at Trewilga on the Newell Highway between Parkes and Peak Hill. The $36 million improvement will upgrade and realign 6.5 kilometres of the Newell Highway to address safety concerns and is due for completion in 2018
  • the Grong Grong realignment project commenced construction in December 2016. The project, which is scheduled to open to traffic by late 2017, will move the Newell Highway west of Grong Grong to improve freight efficiency and road safety. A new overtaking lane was completed near Wallon Creek north of Moree, which brings the total number of new overtaking lanes completed since 2012 to seventeen. This is the seventeenth new overtaking lane completed on the Newell Highway since 2012.

Great Western Highway upgrade

Upgrade work continued on the Great Western Highway throughout 2016‑17, with the completion of a $102.9 million four lane upgrade of the Great Western Highway at Kelso opening to traffic in March 2017, three months ahead of schedule and the completion of safety works at Hartley Valley between Mount Victoria and Hartley Valley in April 2017.

New bridges

Construction commenced on the Harwood Bridge over the Clarence River as part of the Pacific Highway, Woolgoolga to Ballina project. The new bridge is scheduled to open in 2019, 70 metres downstream from the existing road and rail bridge. After completion, it will be 1.5 kilometres long and four lanes wide. This will provide a safer road for motorists and eliminate the need for the bridge to be raised for waterway users.

A construction contract was awarded in April 2017 and work will soon commence on the new $48 million Bruxner Highway Bridge over the Clarence River at Tabulam. The existing bridge will be replaced as part of the Bridges for the Bush Program. The new bridge will be 290 metres long and replica trusses of the old bridge will be incorporated into the new bridge to commemorate the heritage of the original timber truss bridge.

The construction contract for the new Sportsmans Creek Bridge in Lawrence was awarded in April 2017. The bridge is on track for completion in mid-2018. The $27 million bridge is being funded as part of the Bridges for the Bush Program. The project includes a new 175 metre long bridge including a new road connecting Grafton Street to the new bridge and pedestrian path with a safety barrier to separate pedestrians from traffic on the bridge. The preferred route will improve freight efficiency on the Newell Highway, reduce traffic congestions and provide an alternative route during the flood events.

The preferred routing option for an additional bridge over the Macquarie River at Dubbo was announced in June 2017. Construction is expected to commence in mid-2020 and once complete, will remove heavy vehicles crossing the Serisier Bridge and associated congestion in north Dubbo. The new Dubbo Bridge will significantly reduce delays between east and west Dubbo.

Case study

Stingray Creek Bridge in North Haven

The $26 million Stingray Creek Bridge in North Haven was completed in February 2017. Jointly funded by the NSW Government and Port Macquarie-Hastings Council, the new 183 metre, seven-span bridge provides an improved link between the communities of North Haven and Laurieton.

Benefits include a safer crossing for all road users with enhanced pedestrian and cycle paths and improved access for more than 8,000 vehicles per day. The previous bridge was load limited and approaching the end of its functional life. Work has now commenced on removing the old bridge and is expected to be completed in late 2017.

Development and construction of the new bridge is an excellent example of collaboration between Roads and Maritime and the Port Macquarie-Hastings Council, which was achieved through formation of a steering group to oversee all facets of the project.

Sydney metropolitan projects

Building WestConnex

As the Government client for the WestConnex Motorway, the agency entered into a contractual arrangement with the Sydney Motorway Corporation to design, build, own and operate the motorway on behalf of the NSW Government.

WestConnex is the largest transport project in Australia. It will widen and extend the new M4 in Sydney, duplicate the M5 and join them together to form a continuous, free-flowing motorway with connections to the city, airport and port.

The design, development and delivery of the $16.8 billion WestConnex project continued in 2016‑17.

Stage 1

New M4 Widening (Parramatta to Homebush)

Widening the existing M4 from Parramatta to Homebush from three to four lanes in each direction.

In early 2017, a new interchange at Homebush Bay Drive opened to traffic. This removed two sets of traffic lights for cars accessing the M4 from Homebush Bay Drive. A new viaduct was completed in April 2017 and the new M4 widened section was opened to traffic on 4 July 2017.

New M4 East (Homebush to Haberfield)

Extending the M4 Motorway via tunnels between Homebush and Haberfield.

In October 2016, the WestConnex training academy opened at Homebush providing a dedicated training facility to deliver skills training, apprenticeships and traineeships. The academy sources candidates through several organisations that work with the long-term unemployed and disadvantaged communities.

In November 2016, tunnelling commenced at Cintra Park, Concord, for the five kilometre twin motorway from Homebush to Haberfield. The tunnel will be three lanes in each direction.

Stage 2

New M5 (Beverley Hills to St Peters)

Duplicating the M5 East from King Georges Road Interchange Upgrade at Beverley Hills to a new interchange at St Peters.

In July 2016, Commonwealth approval was obtained for the project and work commenced on the New M5 in August 2016

In November 2016, tunnelling started at the site of the St Peters Interchange, with tunnelling starting at the Arncliffe and Bexley construction sites in February 2017. When complete, a nine kilometre tunnel will run from Kingsgrove to the new St Peters Interchange.

King Georges Road interchange upgrade (Beverley Hills)

In December 2016, the King Georges Road interchange opened to traffic two months ahead of schedule. It provided a new interchange between the M5 East and M5 West in preparation for the New M5 project.

Stage 3

M4-M5 Link (Haberfield to St Peters)

The M4-M5 Link comprises tunnels connecting to the New M4 at Haberfield and New M5 at St Peters via Rozelle.

In May 2017, the M4-M5 Link Concept Design was released for community feedback.

Building NorthConnex

Tunnelling for the NorthConnex. project continued, with 19 roadheaders in operation working 24 hours a day. Tunnelling commenced in March 2016 and seven kilometres of the 22 kilometre tunnel completed. Once complete in 2019, NorthConnex will provide twin nine kilometre tunnels linking the M1 Pacific Motorway at Wahroonga to the Hills M2 Motorway at West Pennant Hills.

Northern Beaches Hospital

The old pedestrian bridge at the intersection of Warringah Road and Forest Way was dismantled to make way for two new pedestrian and cyclists bridges - the Warringah Road Bridge and Hilmer Street Bridge - which opened for use in May and June 2017. The new bridges are part of the Northern Beaches hospital road connectivity and enhancements, which will be completed in mid-2019.

Roads in Western Sydney

In November 2016, the upgrade of Richmond Road between Townson Road and north of Garfield Road, Marsden Park was completed. A total of $96 million was spent as part of a larger program of works (valued at $135 million) to double vehicle capacity and improve safety on Richmond Road between Marsden Park and the M7 Motorway.

The new $55 million Werrington Arterial Road linking the M4 Motorway to the Great Western Highway at Claremont Meadows opened to traffic in May 2017. This upgrade will create a new link between the Great Western Highway and the M4 Motorway, increasing capacity and improving travel times. The new arterial road is part of the Western Sydney Infrastructure Plan that will deliver $3.6 billion in road infrastructure improvements across Western Sydney over a 10-year period from 2014‑15.

3.2 Making safety paramount

Safety is a core value and priority. We work to reduce the road toll, boating fatalities and workplace safety risks. We strive to ensure our workplaces and networks are safe for our customers, our people and industry partners.

2016‑17 results

Table 4: Key performance indicators on safety and regulation
Measure 2013‑14 2014‑15 2015‑16 2016‑17 target 2016‑17 actual
Road fatalities per 100,000 population9 4.6 4.1 5.1 ≤4.24 4.73
Boating fatalities per 100,000 registered vessels (recreational and commercial) 2.9 6.7 4.6 N/A 1.2
Total recordable injury frequency rate 28.9 21.9 14.9 ≤18.74 14.1
Operational uptime of fixed digital speed cameras (%) 96.7 96.5 96.9 ≥94.5 96.9
Operational uptime of red light speed cameras (%) 97.4 97 95.9 ≥94.5 97.9
Operational uptime of point-to-point cameras (%) 95.2 96.2 98.1 ≥94.5 98.2
Operational uptime of bus lane cameras (%) 99.3 98.4 94.8 ≥94.5 96.5
Mobile speed enforcement hours delivered against program targets (%) 110 100 99 ≥97 101
  1. Road fatalities for 2013‑14 and 2014‑15 were recorded per calendar year. From 2015‑16 onwards they were recorded per financial year.

Making our roads safer

As part of our commitment to reduce crashes on NSW roads, 170 projects were completed through the Black Spot Program.

We worked closely with service providers throughout the state to deliver projects in the Safer Roads Program. This consisted of $41.1 million to complete 109 projects and $19.6 million on planning and construction activities for a further 42 projects that we expect to complete in 2017‑18.

Delivery of the Behavioural Road Safety Program included supporting 70 councils with road safety officers to complete 186 road safety projects across the state in 2016‑17. Under this program, 204 workshops were delivered to help learner drivers become safe drivers and 293 ‘65 Plus' workshops for older drivers.

There were 108 heavy vehicle compliance operations conducted that targeted a range of safety issues on NSW roads. This year's key focus was Truck and Dog combinations10 within the construction sector and infrastructure protection. Of the compliance operations conducted, 81 per cent took place in the Sydney metropolitan area. The increased focus is due to the record amount of infrastructure currently in development such as WestConnex, NorthConnex and the CBD and South Eastern Light Rail increasing the number of distribution centres being built in and around Sydney.

We managed 494 compliance enforcement sites including enforcement cameras to improve road safety, congestion, the environment and protection of assets.

An educational approach with the civil construction and transport industry continued with a focus on chain of responsibility obligations at sites across the Sydney metropolitan area and direct interactions with identified ‘high risk' operators of fleets via meetings and/or fleet audits. This was to reinforce safety and compliance obligations concerning vehicle standards, mass and load restraints.

  1. Truck and dog combinations are a type of heavy vehicle with a rigid truck with three or four axles towing a dog trailer with three or four axles.

Keeping school children safe around traffic

We are boosting safety infrastructure around schools across the state. These improvements are part of a $5 million investment across 135 schools to help keep children safe walking to and from school. Working in partnership with local councils, 69 safety infrastructure projects were completed this year at schools throughout the state.

We also manage the state-wide School Crossing Supervisor Program on behalf of the Transport for NSW's Centre for Road Safety and employ 1,160 school crossing supervisors.

Making waterways safer

Boating fatalities reduced by 63.6 per cent from eleven in 2015–16 to four in 2016–17.

2016–17 saw an 11.5 per cent increase in vessel safety compliance checks.

Boating safety officers conducting a total of 61,066 vessel safety inspections on waterways across the state.

We continued to deliver statewide boating safety education and compliance, conducting five statewide safety campaigns during 2016‑17.

Boating education officers engaged with more than 51,000 customers in 2016‑17, attended more than 250 boat shows and field days, and conducted 120 school visits to promote safer boating throughout the state.

Major events

The agency played an integral role in ensuring major events were carried out safely.

Figure 8: Major events

  • August 2016

    Sydney International Boat Show

  • December 2016

    Sydney Extreme Sailing Series

  • December 2016

    Sydney Hobart Yacht Race

  • December 2016

    New Year's Eve celebrations

  • January 2017

    Sydney Festival

  • January 2017

    Australia Day celebrations

  • March 2017

    Mardi Gras

  • April 2017

    Anzac Day celebrations

  • May to June 2017

    Vivid Festival

3.3 Meeting customer and community needs

Our role is to evaluate the options available to manage the growing demands for the road and waterway networks and implement solutions to meet the needs of our customers. We engage with customers to understand what matters to them and how to improve the network.

2016‑17 results

Table 5: Key performance indicators on network efficiency and capacity
Measure 2013‑14 2014‑15 2015‑16 actual 2016‑17 target 2016‑17 actual
Journey time reliability - peak travel on key routes is on time (%)11 N/A N/A 86 ≥90 87
Average incident clearance time (for 98% of incidents on principal routes, mins) 37.56 38.11 38.68 40 41.8
Customer satisfaction by mode:12
- private vehicles (%) N/A N/A 85 N/A 85
- heavy vehicles (%) N/A N/A 66 N/A 61
- motorcycles (%) N/A N/A 83 N/A 82
- cyclists (%) N/A N/A 82 N/A 87
- walking (%) N/A N/A 86 N/A 85
  1. Journey time reliability was introduced as a new performance measure in 2015‑16. This measures the percentage of journeys where the daily average travel times were within a threshold (a five-minute variation on a typical thirty-minute journey), during the combined AM and PM peak periods on 92 Sydney metropolitan area roads. Historically data from GPS fleet vehicles was used to measure road performance, however a decline in data sample sizes has resulted in a linear interpolated being used for the period October 2016 to June 2017.
  2. The first roads customer satisfaction survey was undertaken by Transport for NSW in November 2015, therefore, results are not available for 2013‑14 and 2014‑15. The survey is undertaken twice a year in May and November. The results in Table 5 are from the May 2017 survey.

Based on survey of customer types, we are meeting needs of private vehicle, cyclists and pedestrians but need to improve on meeting the needs of heavy vehicles and motorcycles. Road travel reliability was almost on target and average incident clearance time exceeded the target.

Easing congestion in Sydney

Under the $121 million Sydney Clearways Strategy, 11 new and extended clearways were delivered covering 81.8 kilometres of Sydney's road network.

Delivery continued of the NSW Government's $825 million investment in Pinch Point Programs. In 2016‑17, 50 pinch point projects and initiatives were opened to traffic to reduce traffic delays, manage congestion and improve travel times on Sydney's major roads, particularly during weekday peak periods.

The contract for the construction of NSW's first smart motorway was awarded in June 2017. The $470 million M4 Smart Motorway will use real time information, communication and traffic management tools to monitor traffic conditions, manage congestion and respond to incidents providing motorists with safer, smoother and more reliable journeys. Construction is scheduled to commence in 2017 and is expected to be completed in 2020.

Real time traveller information

The activation of the real time traveller information service enables motorist to make informed decisions to manage travel time. There were 42 electronic message signs on six of Sydney's key travel routes:

  • Pacific Highway (Artarmon to Wahroonga)
  • King Georges Road/Mona Vale Road
  • Great Western Highway (Sydney CBD to Emu Plains)
  • North Shore and Northern Beaches Corridor (Military Road, Spit Road, Condamine Street and Pittwater Road)
  • Cumberland Highway (Wahroonga to Glenfield)
  • Old Windsor Road/Victoria Road corridor.

Motorists using these routes now benefit from real time travel time information, with signs showing the number of minutes it takes motorists to reach key landmarks or destinations along their chosen route.

Additionally, we developed 15 interactive maps for the community to enhance information for network customers. This included access maps for heavy vehicles and boating customers, maps detailing road closures and the location of rest areas.

Improving bus journey times and reliability

In 2016‑17, our agency spent $15.2 million delivering projects under the Bus Priority Infrastructure Program.

To make bus travel services faster and more reliable, two projects were delivered on Victoria Road and bus lane markings were upgraded across 13 sites in Sydney. Additionally, to improve seating capacity and customer experience, four road corridors were assessed and cleared of hazards to allow double-decker buses to operate.

In order to improve on-time running, 11 routes across Sydney were assessed in consultation with the community. This covered current bus stop spacing and demand.

Design work is continuing on 35 projects, including upgrades in Macquarie Park to support the Epping to Chatswood rail line closure.

Investigation and design works were undertaken across nine rapid and suburban bus routes to inform and prioritise investment. These include:

  • RBR8 Castle Hill - Liverpool via Parramatta and T-Way
  • RBR9 Parramatta - Macquarie Park via Carlingford and Epping
  • SBR2 Bondi Junction - Burwood via Eastgardens
  • SBR3 Bondi Junction - Miranda via Airport and Eastgardens
  • SBR4 Bondi Junction - Burwood via Sydenham
  • SBR5 Chatswood - Airport via Sydney CBD and Botany Road
  • SBR6 Lane Cove - Eastgardens via Sydney CBD, Surry Hills and Botany Road
  • SBR8 Belrose - Sydney CBD via Eastern Valley Way
  • SBR9 Chatswood - Manly via Frenchs Forest, Dee Why and Brookvale.

Active transport - improving cycling and walking opportunities

We have partnered with councils to make walking and cycling a more convenient, safer and enjoyable transport option. By investing in infrastructure to improve walking and cycling in areas where the majority of short trips occur, we aim to support more accessible, livable and productive areas. More than 100 projects were constructed in 2016‑17 under the $39 million Active Transport Program. Projects implemented under the program during the year included:

  • increasing the number and length of cycleways in both metropolitan and regional areas with 19.6 kilometres of cycleway delivered in metropolitan Sydney and 19.8 kilometres delivered in regional NSW
  • improving safety for pedestrians and cyclists on the Windang Bridge between Windang and Warilla. The $3.57 million bridge upgrade was completed in December 2016 and involved widening paths on both sides of the bridge from 1.5 to 2.5 metres to allow extra room for cyclists and pedestrians. The upgrade completed the ‘missing link' in the local cycleway network
  • construction commenced on a new pedestrian and cycle bridge over the Nepean River between Penrith and Emu Plains in a major boost for pedestrians and cyclists. The new bridge will provide a safe crossing for pedestrians and cyclists over the Nepean River and improve connections to existing and future shared paths, including the Great River Walk.

Case study

Parramatta Cycleway and Subiaco Creek shared user path

Subiaco Creek shared user path is a key link along the Parramatta Valley Cycleway. Construction started on the new path in late 2015‑16 and was completed in June 2017. The $3.7 million project was delivered on time and under budget.

Subiaco Creek was one of the key missing links in the popular Parramatta Valley Cycleway and enables users to avoid around one kilometre of the street network, including the busy, steep and industrial South and Pike streets.

The project provides significant benefits to both the local and wider community and following the completion of this section of the cycleway, cyclists and pedestrians now have a continuous 20 kilometre off-road connection between Sydney Olympic Park and Parramatta CBD.

Case study

School zone safety

Roads and Maritime developed the School Zone Alert System and the NSW Government's Community Road Safety Fund has ensured that every school in NSW has at least one set of school zone flashing lights.

To further protect children travelling to and from school, this vital road safety program was extended to provide an additional 821 school zone flashing lights for 504 school zones across NSW with multiple busy entrances. These additional signs ensure motorists are alerted when entering a school zone and to slow down to 40 kilometres per hour, improving safety for children and adults in and around schools throughout NSW. The School Zone Flashing Lights Program is one of the vital road safety programs funded through speed and red light camera fines by the Community Road Safety Fund.

There are now more than 6,700 school zone flashing lights in place across NSW to warn motorists when they are about to enter a 40km/h school zone.

Promoting freight safety and productivity

Improving freight safety and productivity is paramount for our agency. Several schemes are in operation for the agricultural sector, such as the NSW Sugar Cane Harvest Management Scheme, Grain Harvest Management Scheme, and Livestock Loading Scheme to facilitate the promotion of approved and restricted routes for heavy vehicles. In addition, weight and dimension concessions are now granted to heavy vehicles transporting agricultural commodities across NSW. Maps showing approved routes are available to all drivers via wireless devices. These initiatives have resulted in fewer vehicle trips, with all vehicle trips now occurring on designated routes.

NSW Boating Now - new and improved recreational boating facilities

During 2016‑17 we provided $10.1 million to councils and community groups through the NSW Boating Now Program for new and improved boating facilities. Key projects completed during the year included:

  • construction of an additional lane to the boat ramp and the installation of pontoons at Lemon Tree Passage boat ramp
  • upgrade of the Westport Park boat ramp facility, widening to a four-lane boat ramp, installation of a second on-ramp pontoon and improved car and trailer parking
  • upgrade of the boat ramp at Terrigal Haven and improved access
  • upgrade of the boat ramp and installation of a pontoon at Oatley Bay on the Georges River
  • construction of a new two-lane concrete boat ramp, new centre pontoon, refurbishment of the adjacent wharf and car park improvements at Apex Park, Narooma
  • upgrade of the Sanctuary Point boat ramp, St Georges Basin
  • improving the off-water boat storage at Little Manly.

NSW Government digital licensing program

In collaboration with the Department of Finance, Services and Innovation, we undertook testing of Australia's first electronic driver licence in June 2017. While customers can already obtain digital boat driver licences and vessel registrations, this testing marks the first step to give NSW drivers an option of a digital driver licence. We anticipate digital driver licences will be available by 2019. They will enable customers to access their licence digitally on mobile devices, simplifying the process of applying, updating and renewing licence information.

3.4 An organisation that delivers

Our strategic priority is to continue to develop as an organisation, to operate in a more efficient and responsive way, and to further develop our employees and systems to add value to the services and major infrastructure projects that our organisation delivers each year.

Asset maintenance program

More than $1 billion was invested by Roads and Maritime toward the maintenance of roads and bridges on state- and council-owned networks this financial year. In 2016‑17, 15.44 million square metres of the road network was either patched, rehabilitated or resurfaced. Maintenance projects undertaken include:

  • $2.5 million for the initial seal of a five kilometre unsealed section of the Crookwell to Bathurst Road in Upper Lachlan Shire Council. Work commenced in September 2016 and is expected to be complete by December 2017
  • remarking lines on around 13,000 kilometres of the State Road Network as part of the Delineation Maintenance Program
  • upgrade of Silver City Highway at Eurowie, north of Broken Hill by sealing 13 kilometres of unsealed road. This was funded under the Restart NSW Western Freight Productivity Program and provides significant benefits for roads users, helping to improve safety by increasing traction and reduces travel times and wear on vehicles
  • widening a 10 kilometre section of the Golden Highway between Beni and Merrilea, west of Dunedoo. The $5.5 million project involved providing two metre wide shoulders, a right turn bay, intersection and drainage improvements and improved access to private residences.

2016‑17 results

Table 6: Key performance indicators on quality of road network
Measure 2013‑14 2014‑15 2015‑16 2016‑17 target 2016‑17 actual
Sprayed resealing delivery (1,000,000m²) 11.1 11.2 11.5 10.5 10.1
Asphalt resurfacing delivery (1,000,000m²) 2.2 1.9 1.1 1.4 1.5
Pavement rehabilitation delivery - concrete and flexible (1,000,000m²) 3.4 3.4 2.1 1.9 2.4
NSW State Roads meeting national road smoothness standards (% smooth travel) 92.6 93 94.3 ≥93 94.5
Urban State Roads meeting national road smoothness standard (% smooth travel) 92.6 92.2 94.3 ≥93 94.7
Rural State Roads meeting national road smoothness standards (% smooth travel) 93.7 94.2 94.3 ≥93 94.3

Case study

Innovation in practice- Purpose-built line marking truck

Designed by one of our workshop supervisors in Bega, a new purpose-built line marking truck has improved both operation and maintenance features to provide more reliable and accurate line marking. Aside from increasing the quality and accuracy of line marking, the machine reduces the exposure of our workers to traffic, increasing safety. Some of the technical features include:

  • a variable message sign board on the rear of the machine for clearer communication with motorists
  • height adjustable marking runners to allow fine tuning of line widths from the cab of the truck to reduce the amount of time the operator spends making manual adjustments near live traffic
  • addition of a paint-flow meter, to accurately gauge paint usage
  • data logging system to gather information including paint used, distance of each line type sprayed, start location/stop location and travel speed.

Keeping roads tidy

As part of our Tidy Roads Program, we invest around $9.2 million each year on litter clean ups and regularly carry out maintenance work, including roadside clean ups during off-peak travel times to reduce the impact on motorists and to ensure the safety of workers. This resulted in nearly one tonne of rubbish collected last year for every kilometre of the 18,000 kilometre NSW road network.

Clean Up Australia Day

In February 2017, our employees supported Clean Up Australia Day through litter collection and graffiti removal on major road corridors and infrastructure including:

  • M4 Motorway
  • Sydney Harbour Bridge precinct
  • Pacific Highway rest stops between Raymond Terrace and Taree
  • New England Highway
  • Woolgoolga Bypass
  • Olympic, Newell and Mitchell Highways
  • Mount Ousley.

Our teams collected in excess of 100 cubic metres of litter.

Our Environmental Services team continued its focus on daily activities to make our waterways some of the cleanest in Australia, including removing navigation hazards and collecting litter from waters, public foreshores and beaches.

Transitioning to Service NSW one-stop shops

We are transitioning our customer-facing products and service distribution to Service NSW. Service NSW was established in 2015 to provide a one-stop shop for customers and businesses to interact with all departments and agencies of the NSW Government.

In 2016‑17, the program successfully transitioned 15 motor registries to Service NSW service centres. There are now 79 service centres across NSW and Roads and Maritime has supported the transition of 60 motor registries to service centres since 2015. In collaboration with Service NSW, the final phase of the program has commenced with the roll out of service centres across rural and regional NSW to transition the remaining 24 motor registries.

Case study

New Mount Ousley heavy vehicle rest area

There is now a purpose built facility for cars and trucks travelling through the Illawarra region towards Sydney following the upgrade of the Mount Ousley heavy vehicle rest area. The 3,500 heavy vehicle drivers who frequently drive north up Mount Ousley Road each day can now take a break at the upgraded rest area. Trucks using Mount Ousley regularly include short haul trips between mines on Picton and Appin Roads and Port Kembla, car delivery from Port Kembla to Sydney and general freight using the Princes Highway or Picton Road from the south coast.

During construction of the rest area, more than 13,000 cubic metres of material was removed from the site and more than 5,000 metres of new pavement was constructed. The site was expanded to be five times the size of the old site including excavating to a depth of 1.6 metres before being built back up with a road surface strong enough to hold the A-double vehicles expected to use the area. In addition, a deceleration lane was constructed allowing vehicles to slow down and enter the rest area while not causing delays to traffic along Mt Ousley Road. The exit remained in place with an existing merging lane already in place on Mt Ousley Road.

The old rest area at the site was also the location of a memorial to the late Michael Vercoe, a coffee vendor who used to operate at the facility. During construction a memorial cross was preserved and re-instated after the construction of the new facility. Mr Vercoe's family were present at the opening of the new facility and unveiling of the memorial cross.

Previously the rest area in this location did not meet requirements for trucks under the National Transport Commission or Roads and Maritime guidelines, as there were no proper amenities. Gareth Ward MP, Parliamentary Secretary for the Illawarra and South Coast, officially opened the new facilities on 16 June 2017.

The $8.09 million dollar facility has ten dedicated parking spaces for trucks as well as spaces for cars and caravans, sheltered picnic tables, toilets and a coffee vendor on-site. The upgraded facility allows heavy vehicle drivers and freight operators to better manage fatigue, as well as contributing to the safety of motorists in the Illawarra region.

The Transport Workers Union and Federal Minister for Infrastructure Darren Chester welcomed the completion of this project, which was partly funded by the Australian Government Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program. The program supports infrastructure projects that improve productivity and safety outcomes for heavy vehicle operations across Australia.

3.5 Enhancing economic and social outcomes

We have an obligation to deliver value for money infrastructure that maximises benefits to communities and minimises our footprint. In 2016‑17, we strived to improve the performance of our networks and enhance the economic and social benefits of living in NSW by building and maintaining assets and delivering services that make a difference in people's lives.

2016‑17 results

Table 7: Key performance indicators on economic, environmental and social outcomes
Measure 2013‑14 2014‑15 2015‑16 2016‑17 target 2016‑17 actual
Economic outcomes
Major projects with a benefit to cost ratio of greater than 1 (%) 91 90 89 ≥85 89
Environmental outcomes
Recycling of reclaimed asphalt pavement (%) 99 99.5 97 ≥90 97
Recovery of concrete (%) 97 91 86 ≥80 94
Recycling virgin excavated natural material (%) 99 99 92 ≥90 98
Waste removed from Sydney Harbour (cubic metres) 1,923 2,394 2,053 N/A 2,277
Social outcomes
Sydney Harbour commuter wharves compliant with disability standard for accessible public transport (%) 52 57 59 N/A 68

Sydney Harbour ferry wharf upgrades

We have continued to upgrade wharves on Sydney Harbour as part of the Transport Access Program. The Wharf Upgrade Program aims to provide a better experience for public transport customers by delivering modern, secure and integrated transport infrastructure.

The program has improved accessibility. Eighteen wharves serviced by Sydney Ferries are now accessible for wheelchair users. In 2016‑17:

  • McMahons Point Wharf and Meadowbank Wharf upgrades were completed
  • upgrades commenced at Chiswick, Cockatoo Island and Milsons Point wharves.

Case study

Rose Bay seaplane terminal

Sydney Aviation operates the only seaplane terminal on Sydney Harbour located at Lyne Park, Rose Bay. A shared funding arrangement was agreed between Roads and Maritime and Sydney Seaplanes through the Maritime Waterways Fund to redevelop the terminal. The new terminal opened in October 2016 with the project setting a new commercial benchmark for establishing partnerships between the Waterways Fund and the private sector to develop and provide much needed infrastructure for NSW.

The new terminal has a building life of 40 years. It caters for increased capacity of up to 30,000 passengers per annum adding to the economic growth of NSW.

The contemporary design provides customers with a total journey experience from booking to departure. Passengers on departing flights and the local community both enjoy the use of the new terminal space.

The successful cross-sector collaboration between government, local community and the private sector delivered an outstanding product that is widely accepted by all stakeholders and customers.

Reducing marine pollution

In 2016‑17 we delivered a Sydney Harbour cleaning program to reduce the impacts of marine pollution, debris and hazards to navigation by:

  • visiting 22,476 sites around the harbour
  • removing 2,277 cubic metres of litter and debris, equivalent to 9,488 standard wheelie bins (an eight per cent improvement on last year)
  • collecting 16.1 million litres of sewage at commercial and recreational vessel sewage pump out facilities, equating to 6.2 swimming pools (a 12.5 per cent improvement on last year)
  • removing 3,692 navigational hazards from harbour waters (a 42 per cent improvement on last year).

Case study

Port Kembla marine salvage and artificial reef

The Oceanlinx wave generator was moored off the northern breakwater at Port Kembla and had not been operational for nine years. The generator was badly damaged from the elements and storms, and was an unsightly safety hazard and environmental concern.

In August 2016 we engaged Polaris Marine Pty Ltd to remove and demolish the Oceanlinx wave generator. Polaris completed the removal in early June 2017. The structure was scuttled at deep sea with prior approval from the Department of Environment and Energy under the Environment Protection (Sea Dumping) Act 1981 to create an artificial reef providing an additional habitat for fish and other aquatic animals and plants.

Supporting local councils with the Regional Road Block Grant Program

The NSW Government provides financial assistance to all councils in NSW for the maintenance of regional roads in recognition of their importance to local communities and businesses. The agency administers the Regional Road Block Grant Program, which provides a state contribution towards the maintenance of regional roads, with supplementary funding available for high merit projects from the Repair and Improvement of Regional Roads Program. We also administer natural disaster funding on behalf of the Office of Emergency Management to assist councils to restore roads and bridges damaged by declared natural disasters to their pre-disaster condition.

Improving Aboriginal road safety

A key commitment under the NSW Road Safety Strategy 2012-2021 is to improve Aboriginal road safety. Under the NSW Aboriginal Road Safety Action Plan 2014-2017, we delivered road safety education initiatives to help Aboriginal people to protect themselves, their families and their community. Some of the initiatives included:

  • bike safety and child car safety seat programs delivered in 12 Aboriginal communities across NSW resulting in 20 Aboriginal people trained and 624 child restraints distributed to provide greater safety in vehicles
  • the ‘Tour Da Country' to support and promote bike safety awareness and Indigenous health in regional and remote Aboriginal communities in partnership with Transport for NSW. The bike ride took place on the 841-kilometre route from Sydney to Walgett stopping at schools to talk about the importance of bicycle and helmet safety, as well as healthy eating, exercise and education. More than 1,000 helmets were handed out
  • the Driver Licensing Access Program which helps Aboriginal and other disadvantaged people to obtain and retain their driver licence and remain safe and legal drivers. In 2016‑17 the program helped 991 individuals to gain their learner licence and 614 to gain their provisional licence in more than 55 communities
  • 'Don't Drink and Drive' campaigns in Wagga Wagga, Walgett, Bourke and Sydney. This included the annual NSW Aboriginal Rugby League Knockout in October 2016 where around 15,000 people attended Leichhardt Oval in Sydney over four days. Roads and Maritime attended the event to deliver key messages about drink driving, having a Plan B, as well as the dangers of driving when fatigued.

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