Pacific Highway to Wauchope

The Oxley Highway is one of the main east-west routes in northern NSW, linking Port Macquarie and the Pacific Highway to Wauchope, the New England Highway and beyond.

Updates and announcements

Latest news - April 2013

Construction began in March 2013 on an overtaking lane on the Oxley Highway, between Port Macquarie and Wauchope. The $3.5 million, one kilometre long overtaking lane will improve safety and traffic flow on the Oxley Highway, and will take about six months to complete, weather permitting.

The overtaking lane is located on the Oxley Highway near the Stoney Creek booster station area, about two kilometres west of the Pacific Highway. The road will be widened to accommodate the new overtaking lane, with road shoulders on this section of the highway also being widened and improved as part of the upgrade.

Current road conditions - Oxley Highway, approximately two kilometres west of the Pacific Highway

Until the overtaking lane is complete, motorists may experience changed traffic conditions between 7am and 6pm on weekdays and between 8am and 1pm on Saturdays. During work hours there may be short delays and traffic controllers will in place to manage traffic.

Some works will need to be carried out at night to reduce delays to traffic. Community updates will be provided as planning for those works proceeds.

Motorists are asked to comply with all signs and proceed with care through the worksite.

Project background

The Oxley Highway is one of the main east-west routes in northern NSW, linking Port Macquarie and the Pacific Highway to Wauchope, the New England Highway and beyond.

Port Macquarie is a recognised growth area in NSW and planned development in nearby Wauchope and at several locations along the Oxley Highway is expected to increase traffic between Wauchope and Port Macquarie significantly in the next 10 years.

  • This section of the Oxley Highway is nine kilometres long with approximately 9500 vehicles travelling along the section every day. This traffic includes about 100 heavy vehicles daily
  • Over the last five years, 30 road crashes have been reported in the section of the Oxley Highway between the Pacific Highway and Wauchope:
    • 15 of these crashes resulted in injury, with a total of 24 people injured
    • 12 of the crashes involved a vehicle leave the road on a curve
    • 11 crashes were related to junctions, side roads or rear ending
  • The travel time through this section during peak traffic periods is approximately seven minutes.

In 2011 and 2012, Roads and Maritime Services investigated a range of safety upgrades along the section of the Oxley Highway between the Pacific Highway and Wauchope. These investigations considered carrying out upgrade work (including intersection improvements), constructing an overtaking lane or reconstructing curves to improve safety and traffic flow.

In August 2012, it was announced that an overtaking lane had been selected for the Oxley Highway between the Pacific Highway and Wauchope.

As part of the investigations, Roads and Maritime identified a site for the upgrade near the Stoney Creek booster station area, approximately two kilometres west of the Pacific Highway. The new overtaking lane will be approximately one kilometre long, with the road to be widened to accommodate the new overtaking lane. Road shoulders along this one kilometre section will also be widened and improved as part of the upgrade.

Community engagement

Before inviting community feedback on the upgrade, Roads and Maritime completed some initial data gathering and undertook road and traffic assessment work. A number of factors were considered, including travel patterns and times (including during peak traffic periods), traffic mix and speed, crash data, environmental, social and economic constraints, potential future upgrades and community input.

To ensure that the project considered the needs of the local community and regular road users, Roads and Maritime invited feedback on the upgrade investigations in 2011. This consultation aimed to understand community perspectives on the need for safety improvements in the area, including on the specific type of upgrade required to provide the best outcome for road users.

Community and stakeholder feedback was considered in detail by the project team in the preparation of the concept design for the new overtaking lane.

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