Eastern Distributor - completed

The Eastern Distributor is a six kilometre motorway link between the city and Sydney's Kingsford Smith Airport and Port Botany.

Project background

Roads and Maritime Services identified the need for a fast, efficient motorway to reduce through traffic in the inner city and reduce travel times between the city and Sydney's Kingsford Smith Airport and Port Botany.

The Eastern Distributor was funded and built by Airport Motorway Limited which operates, maintains and repairs the motorway until 2048, when it is scheduled to revert to public ownership.

The Eastern Distributor project won two of the nation's highest awards for engineering excellence:

  • The prestigious Bradfield Award
  • The Sir William Hudson Award.


Road users benefit from:

  • Faster and more reliable travel to the airport
  • Quicker journey times between the Cahill Expressway at Woolloomooloo and Southern Cross Drive at Zetland
  • Full access to the CBD from Woolloomooloo with the reopening of Cathedral Street.

Public transport users benefit from:

  • Faster and more efficient bus travel on new dedicated bus lanes on Oxford and Flinders streets.

Local residents benefit from:

  • Reduced traffic on eastern Sydney streets
  • Lessened traffic noise and air pollution
  • Improved amenity on local streets due to traffic calming measures and landscaping
  • Improved local access with the conversion of former one way streets back to two way streets (for example Crown Street and Bourke Street).

Key features

  • 'The Parkway' - a landscaped sunken section of the motorway along South Dowling Street, Surry Hills
  • The creation of new public space in Taylor Square with the closure of Bourke Street
  • The Landbridge: close to one hectare of parkland has been created by construction of a shelter arching over the Cahill Expressway, uniting parts of the Domain
  • A substantial upgrade of Moore Park.

For more information on urban design, see the Centre for Urban Design.

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