Motorists have been waiting decades for a bypass of Albion Park Rail - but they only need to wait another seven months.
The project was due for completion at the back end of 2022 but Kiama MP Gareth Ward on Monday announced motorists will be driving on it around the middle of next year, due to construction being ahead of schedule.
"That's taking advantage of extended [construction] hours through COVID, which has been beneficial, but obviously the lack of rain has meant the project can progress much more quickly," Mr Ward said.
"We've done 90 per cent of the earthworks, which is often the toughest part of any project, and all the 85 super T girders are in, so very large parts of the program project have been complete."
Mr Ward said there could still be heavy downpours of rain over the coming months, but its effect would be reduced given the major parts of construction are completed.
"A lot of the other things can be done in spite of inclement weather," Mr Ward said.
"All of the bridge structures are up, 589 of the 620 bridge planks are installed. We've started laying asphalt on sections of the main route and 20,000 tons of asphalt have already been laid."
While upgrades elsewhere on the Princes Highway - at Gerringong and Berry - saw sections of the new road open gradually through to the completion date, Mr Ward said most of the Albion Park Rail bypass won't see a vehicle until the whole stretch is open.
"Mini switches happen where there is existing road being replaced with new road," Mr Ward said.
"We've done that along the East West Link and further to that later this month there will be another mini switch on the East West Link.
"But the other sections of highway are new road so we won't be opening those until the official completion of the bypass next year."
Even after construction of the bypass began, some people were still sceptical that it would ever be built. With sections of new road on the East-West Link and new sportsfields, Mr Ward said "seeing is believing".
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