Coalfields Highway

 

Current Status

The 4km extension to the Roelands Hill Climbing Lane is progressing well with final pavement works underway.  These works commence just prior to the existing truck pull-off bay, and extend to the overtaking lane at the top of the hill.  The finished works will provide a continuous seven kilometre long climbing lane over Roelands Hill.  A sealed shoulder will be provided to enhance safety for motorists and cyclists.

Until the end of April 2014 these works will result in significant impacts to Coalfields Highway with stop/go traffic management in place.  While delays so far have not been significant, delays of up to 15 minutes may apply, depending on the activity being undertaken.

Main Roads will be working with its Contractors to minimise delays where possible, however, road users should plan for disruptions.  The Contractor is required to keep a minimum of one lane open between 6.00 am and 7.30 am, and 3.30 pm to 6.00 pm, but temporary closure of all lanes may be implemented at other times on an as-required basis.

Please pay attention to directions given by traffic controllers to ensure the safety of all road users and workers.

Our latest newsletter provides an update on other sections of the project.  For our previous updates, please see the August 2013 newsletter

 

Project Scope

The Roelands Hill section is one of five along the Coalfields Highway that will be upgraded as part of an extensive works program to improve the safety of the road.

Previously, in 2011, Main Roads completed the upgrade of Coalfields Highway between Allanson and Collie.  The latest map, shows the current and remaining works.  A brief scope of works for each of the remaining sections is detailed below.

 

1) Wellington Dam Section

Works include:

  • Reconstruction and realignment of three kilometres of road near the intersection with Wellington Dam Road.
  • Reinstatement of the existing westbound passing lane to the west of Wellington Dam Road.
  • Extension to the eastbound passing lane in the Gastaldo West section.
  • Upgrading the Wellington Dam Road intersection to provide a separate lane for right turn movements from Coalfields Highway.
  • Reinstatement of Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPaW) infrastructure (parking bay entrance, Munda Biddi Trail crossing, fire access tracks).
  • During 2014, preconstruction works including clearing, fencing, relocation of services and geotechnical investigations will be undertaken.
  • Major works are scheduled to commence in January 2015, subject to the timing of land acquisitions.
2) Gastaldo West Section

Works include:

  • Reconstruction and realignment of two kilometres of road just east of Wellington Dam Road to Gastaldo Road.
  • Reinstatement of the existing eastbound passing lane which will now be extended to start from the end of the Wellington Dam section.
  • Works are scheduled to commence later in 2015, subject to the timing of land acquisitions for the adjoining Wellington Dam section.
3) Gastaldo East Section

Works include:

  • Reconstruction and realignment of three kilometres of road from Gastaldo Road to the water pipeline crossing.
  • Reinstatement of the existing westbound passing lane that starts in the Hamilton River section.

As part of Gastaldo West and East which are intended to be completed concurrently, there is a proposal to upgrade the Gastaldo Road intersection to include a right turn acceleration lane for vehicles turning right onto the Coalfields Highway.

Works are scheduled to commence later in 2015, subject to the timing of land acquisitions for the adjoining Hamilton River section.

4) Hamilton River Section

Works include:

  • Reconstruction and realignment of 2.5 kilometres of road from the water pipeline to the recently completed Shine’s section realignment.
  • Reinstatement of the existing eastbound passing lane (east of the Hamilton River crossing).
  • Construction of an extension to the existing westbound passing lane that extends into the Gastaldo East section.
  • Construction of an improved access from the highway for the DPaW campsite just east of the Hamilton River crossing.
  • Rationalisation of DPaW management tracks.
  • Major works are scheduled to commence in January 2015, subject to the timing of land acquisitions.
 

Project Need

The upgrade of the Coalfields Highway has been ongoing over the last 30 years. Further improvements are required for several reasons:

  • There are sections of narrow sealed width, unsealed shoulders and poor geometry (winding, tight curves and crests).
  • To provide safer opportunities for road users to easily overtake slow vehicles.
  • Increasing volumes of traffic are using the route, including more heavy vehicles and oversized loads servicing the mining, industrial and agricultural sectors.
  • There is adjacent vegetation close to the edge of the road, including large trees that pose a traffic hazard to the road user.

The project will:

  • Increase road user safety and reduce the number and severity of crashes.
  • Cater for increasing traffic volumes.
  • Meet changing transport needs, including reducing freight costs.

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Timing and Community Benefits

 Further to the $25 million allocation previously announced, the 2013/14 State Budget confirmed that an additional $28 million would be provided to continue upgrading works on the Highway with the following delivery timeframe:

  • 2013/14 – Roelands Hill (Section 5 - underway).
  • 2014/15 – Wellington and Hamilton Sections (Sections 1 & 4).
  • 2015/16 – Gastaldo Sections (Sections 2 & 3).

Main Roads will advise affected landowners and the community about construction details and road access through the area.

The project benefits include:

  • Heightened road safety for all users.
  • Reduced impact of road crashes on road users.
  • Greater transport efficiency, including reduced freight costs.

 

Managing Impacts

 Main Roads will be managing all social, environmental and economic impacts, including:

  • Minimising potential impact on the Wellington National Park and potential habitats for black cockatoos.
  • Minimising impacts and continuing consultation with affected landowners (regarding property access and land acquisition) and Aboriginal representatives.
  • Providing updated information to the community about roadworks and impacts to road user journeys.
  • Park management (fire access, Munda Biddi Trail) in close consultation with the local DPaW representatives.

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Environmental Consultation and Documentation

Working with the local offices of the Department of Parks and Wildlife, Main Roads has undertaken a number of environmental surveys and heritage consultations to determine impacts and how they can be managed throughout the project.  This information has been used to prepare an Environmental Impact Assessment and subsequently, the project was referred to both the Environmental Protection Authority (State Government) and the Commonwealth Department of the Environment (formally Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities) 

 

Community Information

Roadworks information will be provided to the community on a regular basis via Variable Message Signs on site, advertising in the local media and on the South West Roadworks and Road Conditions page.

We welcome queries or feedback from the community.  Please contact Carolyn Walker on:

Phone: (08) 9450 1445 (8am-6pm)
Fax: (08) 9450 1261
Email: icwalker@vianet.net.au

 

 

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Modified: 08 Apr 2014