The past week brought some good news when it came to the region’s roads and some not-so-good news.
Well, not-so-good to some people, that is.
The good news was that the government started looking for people to build the Albion Park Rail bypass.
While the government has been doing a lot of the necessary but boring paperwork behind the scenes – like environmental impact statements and reviewing the road corridor – there hasn’t been all that much “action”, if you catch my drift.
Seeing big machines digging holes and men running around in hi-vis vests would be better, but having the government take the step of calling for expressions of interest in building the bypass is a sign of action.
It’s a pretty clear indication that the government is serious about building the bypass and getting rid of what has to be the most frustrating stretch of road in the Illawarra.
It’s still a few years away from being finished – at this stage Roads and Maritime Services is expecting the bypass to be ready to drive on by 2023.
But it’s a positive that things are moving forward; especially after ages where there was no movement at all.
And the roads project that might not have been good news? Well, that’s the announcement of the second closure of Bulli Pass.
Without question, the rock fall fencing being placed in the bushland overlooking the pass is essential.
And it’s hard to see any other way it could be put in place without a long-term closure (imagine the furore if they did it while the pass was open, a rock was dislodged and hit a car).
But, just as there were those angry at the first closure last year, there will be people not at all pleased that we have to go through it again.
Some do have a fair point – businesses in the northern suburbs lost drive-by customers last time and they expect to again.
However, for all the rest of the people who made noise before the first closure about how bad it was going to be for them, there wasn’t all that much noise once the closure was in place.
Perhaps we all just got on with stuff and learned to put up with it until it was finished.
It’s what we’ll have to do come Monday, August 28, when the big machines and men in hi vis vests take over Bulli Pass for 10 weeks.