Upgrade for North Wollongong bottleneck

traffic jam: Roads and Maritime Services is adding an extra lane to the notorious bottleneck at the intersection of the Princes Highway and Memorial Drive at North Wollongong. Picture: Adam McLean
traffic jam: Roads and Maritime Services is adding an extra lane to the notorious bottleneck at the intersection of the Princes Highway and Memorial Drive at North Wollongong. Picture: Adam McLean

There could be some short-term pain before the long-term gain when it comes to one North Wollongong bottleneck.

Roads and Maritime Services (RMS) has been investigating the intersection of the Princes Highway and Memorial Drive, North Wollongong.

The intersection is at the end of the northbound Memorial Drive off ramp which is increasingly clogged with traffic during peak periods.

The traffic jams make it dangerous for those motorists speeding up to enter Memorial Drive or slowing down to leave it.

RMS has been aware of the increasing traffic congestion at this location.

“Over time there has been increased use of the northbound exit ramp, from Memorial Drive to the Princes Highway, resulting in queuing particularly for vehicles turning right,” an RMS spokesman said.

The spokesman said RMS will be adding an extra lane, resulting in two right and two left-turn lanes.

“The NSW Government has provided $6.73 million to upgrade the exit ramp from Memorial Drive to the Princes Highway at the North Wollongong interchange to reduce delays and improve road user safety,” the spokesman said.

Preliminary work will start shortly, with the bulk of the work to start later in 2017.

Over time there has been increased use of the northbound exit ramp ... resulting in queuing particularly for vehicles turning right.

RMS spokesman

“Early work which includes relocating a sewer will be carried out in coming weeks, with major work expected to start this year which will take about 12 months to complete, weather permitting,” a spokesman said.

The work will likely cause some traffic delays over the next 12 months.

“While most work will take place off road to reduce the impact to motorists, some lane closures may be required outside peak hours,” he said.

The fourth lane will be constructed on part of the land now occupied by Wollongong High School of the Performing Arts.

It is understood some of the school’s facilities will need to be relocated.

“RMS will continue working with Wollongong High School of the Performing Arts as work progresses,” the spokesman said.