Information sessions on the WestConnex Transport project start this weekend
Roads Minister Duncan Gay said a series of drop in sessions were being held from Homebush to Haberfield to provide an opportunity for residents and business owners to find out more and make a comment.
“We are embarking on an unprecedented level of community consultation. Detail on the concept design for the M4 East is being distributed to 105,000 residents and businesses along the corridor and we are seeking feedback which will feed into the environmental assessment,” Mr Gay said.
“In addition, seven community information sessions advertised in the material sent to residents are scheduled for this month and again in February, with the first session being held at Ashfield this Saturday.
“About 12 project team members will be on hand to answer questions including with the Project Manager, acting Chief Executive and Environment Manager so I encourage people to drop in.
“More than 100 letters had been issued last week to property owners identified as likely to be impacted by the upgrade to begin in mid 2016.
“Apart from writing to and calling property owners, the WestConnex Delivery Authority is responding to residents by organising one on one meetings involving the project manager and other staff either at their property or at another location convenient to them.
“These measures are additional to more than 20 briefings for councils and about 40 information sessions and staffed displays held around Western Sydney since the business case project was approved in September including translated video material in eight languages.
Community consultation has been held on the M4 Widening concept design and the Environmental Impact Statement will go on display for comment in early 2014. The Environmental Impact Statement for the M4 East will go on display in late 2014.
The M4 East will include a five kilometre tunnel extension of the M4 from near Underwood Road to Parramatta Road and City West Link Haberfield. It will also include an eastbound entry and westbound exit at Concord Road, North Strathfield.
Importantly, long sections will be built under suburbs, not through them, to minimise the impact on the surface.
WestConnex will transform Sydney by making it easier for motorists to travel from Sydney's west to the city, airport and port. It will cut a typical time from Parramatta to Sydney Airport by 40 minutes.
Putting 3,000 trucks a day into underground tunnels will allow 10kms of bus lanes to be built on Parramatta Road, essentially cutting bus travel times in half for those travelling from the inner-west to the city.
“With the M4 East mostly in tunnel, we’ve been able to limit the number of properties which will be impacted.
“There are still a number of residential, commercial and industrial properties which will need to be acquired around the tunnel portals (entry and exits) and we have been contacting these property owners individually.
“The exact number and location of properties won’t be known until the environmental assessment is completed. Feedback is invited on the M4 East until Monday 17 February 2014.
“The number and location of the ventilation outlets will be informed by air quality standards to be determined by an independent expert committee headed by NSW chief scientist Mary O’Kane.
The NSW Government is investing $1.8 billion in WestConnex, with the Australian Government also contributing $1.5 billion. For more information on the project, visit the WestConnex website.
COMMUNITY INFORMATION SESSIONS:
Residents and business owners are invited to attend one of the following community sessions:
Saturday 7 December
9am to 1pm
St John’s Church Hall, 64 Bland Street, Ashfield
Monday 9 December
2pm to 6pm
Michael Maher Room, Ground Floor
78 Dalhousie Street, Haberfield
Saturday 14 December
10am to 2pm
Concord Library, 60 Flavelle Street, Concord
Tuesday 4 February
4pm to 8pm
Five Dock Leisure Centre
corner Queens Road and William Street, Five Dock
Thursday 6 February
3pm to 7pm
Burwood Park Community Centre
2A Corner Street, Burwood
Sunday 9 February
9am to 1pm
Paddy’s Market, Flemington
Entry via Austin Avenue, Homebush West
Wednesday 12 February
9am to 1pm
Hungry Lions Café, 11-21 Underwood Road, Homebush