Bangalee - 2ST

Questions asked about Nowra's $40M road to nowhere


A road funded by the Federal Government four years ago to help alleviate traffic congestion during the new Nowra Bridge's construction has still not been built, and Shoalhaven Council candidate Serena Copley is asking why.

She says the government gave Shoalhaven Council $13.9 million in 2017 to build the 1.8km Northern Collector Road, and another $32 million a few years later.

Yet to date only a roundabout has been built.

"After four years and $13.9 million, and a further funding of $32 million by the Federal Government, to date we have a roundabout," she said.

"Where's the rest of it?"

"The Northern Collector Road was meant to alleviate traffic congestion prior to the commencement of construction of the new Shoalhaven River Bridge, however, it looks like the bridge will be finished long before council starts building the link road," Ms Copley said.

"Residents of North Nowra, Bangalee, Tapitalee, and surrounds have been significantly impacted by traffic congestion as part of the major construction works occurring at the Illaroo Road and Princes Highway intersection.


"The Northern Collector Road was meant to alleviate some of this pain. The council has simply failed to deliver this essential piece of infrastructure right when residents need it the most!

"Shoalhaven City Council received 100 per cent of the funding to complete the Northern Collector Road from the Federal Government - it is simply unacceptable that they have been unable to deliver it within four years," Ms Copley said.

"You can only imagine the frustration of residents of Bangalee, Tapitallee and North Nowra, driving through a round about and past this non-existent road to then be met with traffic jams down on Illaroo Road, and asking 'Why don't we have this road yet?'"

Local resident and fellow candidate Fred Campbell OAM said the mayor turned the first sod on the Northern Collector Road more than a year ago, yet not even a metre of road had been laid.

"This road was touted as connecting two of the fastest growing communities in the Shoalhaven, yet little has been achieved to date," Mr Campbell said.

"Local residents who travel north have been looking forward to this road for years and don't understand why council hasn't even started building it.

"Shoalhaven City Council must explain to the community why they have failed to deliver this important piece of infrastructure and commit to a timetable going forward," Mr Campbell said.

Shoalhaven Mayor Amanda Findley said the first stage of building the collector road was always going to be building the roundabout on Illaroo Road, which had been completed.

"There's been a number of issues with the geotechnical studies in that area, and the geotechnical studies confirmed council's worst fears that there needed to be funding applied for to finish the project," Cr Findley said.

"So now the geotechnical issues have been cleared, the funding has been approved, the work will be able to commence."

Images: Glenn Ellard