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400+ Pacific Highway upgrade jobs on the way

A newly announced contract to deliver a 34-kilometre section of upgraded Pacific Highway between Devils Pulpit and Richmond River will also deliver upwards of 400 jobs.

Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said CPB Contractors Pty Ltd had been awarded the works contract as part of the upgrade works along the Woolgoolga to Ballina section of the Pacific Highway.

“This is Australia’s largest regional road infrastructure project, and certainly the biggest generator of jobs in the region, keeping money flowing through the region’s economy and supporting local families. When complete in 2020 the fully duplicated highway will reduce travel times—and it is already reducing fatalities which have halved since the mid-1990s thanks to works undertaken to date,” Mr Chester said.

NSW Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey said major civil contracts were also recently awarded for work between Richmond River and Ballina Bypass and between Glenugie and Maclean, helping keep the upgrade on target to open by 2020.

“The main civil work contract between Devils Pulpit and Richmond River involves delivering earthwork, some soft soil treatment north of Woodburn, drainage, some road surfaces, two underpasses and four overpasses to provide access for local traffic,” Mrs Pavey said.

Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan said the 155-kilometre Woolgoolga to Ballina section would complete the highway upgrade to two lanes in each direction between Hexham and the Queensland border while delivering thousands of construction jobs.

“This contract alone is expected to deliver about 420 jobs, part of about 2,500 direct and 7,500 indirect jobs expected to be supported in the broader Woolgoolga to Ballina workforce at the peak of construction activity,” Mr Hogan said.

NSW Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis said important early work in this section of the upgrade was progressing well, with soil soft treatment next to Tuckombil Canal currently undergoing settlement and precast concrete bridge pieces being delivered for the Woodburn to Broadwater service road fauna crossing.

“Bielby Hull Albem Joint Venture was recently awarded a contract to build 11 twin bridges in this section, part of the 166 to be built along the 155-kilometre Woolgoolga to Ballina section, including the 1.5-kilometre bridge across the Clarence River at Harwood and the 980-metre bridge across the Richmond River at Broadwater,” Mr Gulaptis said.

The Australian and New South Wales governments are funding the Woolgoolga to Ballina upgrade on an 80:20 basis.

Roads and Maritime Services are continuing to work with the administrator of Ostwald Brothers following their recent announcement to enter into voluntary administration. This includes investigating options for former workers to obtain further employment on other Pacific Highway upgrade projects.

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