Central Coast Highway Upgrade, Erina and Wamberal
The Central Coast Highway provides an important connection between Gosford and The Entrance and also between the beach suburbs and hinterland. The project improves safety and capacity along a 4.4km section of highway between Carlton Road and Ocean View Drive. The road was widened from a single undivided carriageway to two lanes and a bus/parking lane in each direction separated by a central median, to match recently upgraded adjacent sections of the highway.
This section of the Central Coast Highway was recognised as having a very attractive rural character, travelling through a landscape dominated by numerous tall trees, large gardens and yards, and rural-residential land use. The design of the upgrade aimed to reflect this character by:
- Identifying the most significant trees or tree groupings that contributed high quality value to the corridor and assess strategies to minimise impacts on them
- Varying horizontal and vertical alignments of the two carriageways as well as the median width to create a more informal character to the highway
- Including meandering pedestrian and shared paths to maximise retention of trees and to provide an informal path character
- Introducing a planted median where possible; helping to minimise the apparent scale of the road.
Materials and finishes were chosen to reinforce the rural character of the road corridor. Sandstone blocks and exposed aggregate concrete replicated existing retaining walls, fence styles and plant palettes, developed to retain the spatial structure and character of the existing highway.