2 August 2021

Motorists warned daily Kings Highway closures will continue for months

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Burnt trees on Clyde Mountain

Significant work is required to removed burnt trees from the Black Summer bushfires that are situated close to Kings Highway on Clyde Mountain. Photo: Kim Treasure.

The main road connecting Canberra to the NSW South Coast will be closed during work hours four days a week for up to three months as Transport for NSW works to remove unstable trees near the Kings Highway at Clyde Mountain.

Transport for NSW regional director, south, Sam Knight said the closures from River Forest Road to Misty Mountain Road will be in place from Monday to Thursday between 8:00 am and 4:00 pm from Monday, 30 August, to mid-November, weather permitting.

“An arborist report identified approximately 400 high-risk trees on the Clyde Mountain section of the highway which were badly burnt in the 2019-2020 bushfires,” said Ms Knight.

“These trees have become more unstable due to subsequent storms and flooding, and will be removed because they pose a safety risk to road users.

READ ALSO Mogo’s ‘new’ old church complete 18 months after bushfire

“This work must be carried out under full road closure of the Kings Highway during the day as there would be an unacceptable safety risk if the work was carried out at night.”

Ms Knight said the road will be fully open from 4:00 pm to 8:00 am to ensure connectivity, and there will be no closures on Fridays, weekends, public holidays or school holidays due to higher traffic volumes.

Motorists are advised to plan ahead.

“The benefits of an eight-hour full road closure include work being completed more efficiently and in a shorter timeframe,” said Ms Knight.

“Closure times have been determined in consultation with Eurobodalla Shire Council, and aim to balance minimising disruption to motorists with the need to safely and efficiently carry out the work.

“Alternative routes will be available via the state and regional road network, and Transport for NSW encourages motorists to travel outside of the closure times, or plan their journeys in advance.”

The alternative route north will be via the Hume Highway, Picton Road and Princes Highway, and could add up to 7.5 hours of travel time depending on the road user’s origin and destination.

READ ALSO Work underway on next big Canberra-to-coast bridge project

The alternative route south is via the Kings Highway, Monaro Highway, Snowy Mountains Highway and Princes Highway, and could add up to 5.5 hours of travel time depending on the road user’s origin and destination.

Motorists are advised to plan their journey, drive to the conditions and follow the directions of signs and traffic control.

A spokesperson said the project will involve a large number of variables, and adjustments may be made to methods and timing once work begins.

The closures will be another blow to South Coast businesses, already suffering from the downturn in trade caused by COVID-19 on the back of the Black Summer bushfires. There are more than 30,000 traffic movements on that route each week.

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Continuing Band-Aid solutions for over 40 years and no doubt the next 40 at the least. Leave the poor old mountain alone and find an alterative route – even if it’s a toll-way for non-commercial users. I acknowledge there will be pain and financial implications for current farmers, land owners and businesses but the road will be used by generations.

This is a disgrace. Already businesses are suffering from the aftermath of bushfires and then covid, and now the Sydney outbreak. I don’t mean to be facetious but is NSW Transport actively trying to put people out of business? It’s all right for them and their minister Andrew Constance (who is our MP remember) with their guaranteed salaries, but our income is dependent on people being able to come here. This is a really bad decision and will be remembered.

Andrea Franke8:42 am 01 Aug 21

What about patient transport between hospitals and Ambulances? The detour of hundreds of kilometres can potentially be very dangerous
Why now, has this got to do with Andrew Constance 40 m road verge?
Does removing all these trees cause more erosion , causing more road closures in the future?

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