More work for the proposed F6 extension – which would allow motorists to bypass 60 sets of lights – will take place in the coming months.
Starting from this month, Roads and Maritime Services will spend three months conducting geotechnical investigations along the route that would extend from Waterfall and connect to the Sydney motorway network at St Peters.
“Work will be carried out in the Bayside and Georges River Council areas and involve drilling small diameter holes about the size of an orange to extract rock core samples for scientific testing and analysis and inform recommendations about the most suitable corridor,” Parliamentary Secretary for the Illawarra Gareth Ward said.
“It is expected up to 30 sites will be drilled during a three-month period from early May 2017 and Roads and Maritime Services will work to minimise any disturbance to the community and operate in an environmentally sensitive and sustainable manner.”
Mr Ward said Roads and Maritime Services will ensure the geotechnical work will be carried out in public where possible – either on roads or in open spaces.
Equipment used may include a truck-mounted or self-propelled drilling rig, support equipment and hand tools and other items.
When the drilling work is complete, the drill holes will be capped and the sites restored to their previous condition.
Geotechnical work as part of the planning of the extension began a year ago, Mr Ward said.
“Roads and Maritime Services has already carried out significant project development work in 2016, as part of a $26 million package including geotechnical investigations, survey work, traffic and environmental studies along the proposed F6 extension corridor,” Mr Ward said.
“As a result of these initial investigations, the Berejiklian government has allocated an additional $20 million to conduct further assessments for the proposed F6 extension.”
The geotechnical investigations will be used in any business case about the current corridor.
There has been no decision made regarding the construction of the proposed F6 extension.
The proposed extension would provide the 35-kilometre missing road link between the Illawarra and southern Sydney.
An extension has been talked about since 1948, when a road corridor was set aside.
A small part of the extension has already been built – the Captain Cook Bridge and a three-lane section of highway at Taren Point Road.
The extension would allow motorists to skip the 18 sets of lights between Loftus in the south to Tom Ugly’s Bridge and the 42 sets between the bridge and St Peters.