Roads lead to success for farmers
The NSW Government has delivered the Drought Relief Heavy Vehicle Access Program with $15 million allocated to improve local roads and support farmers and their families through worsening drought conditions.
The Drought Relief Heavy Vehicle Access Program was introduced in October 2018 to provide assistance toward the cost of maintenance and minor improvement work on council roads and roadsides to improve heavy vehicle access, in support of the drought relief freight task. In June 2020, the final submissions were approved and full $15M allocation realised; bringing the program to a close.
Transport for NSW approved almost 70 submissions* from more than 50 local councils across NSW.
Each council could apply for up to $300,000 in funding, with a total of $15 million allocated across regional NSW.
Of the submissions approved, 50 projects and almost $12 million were invested in the western and south western regions of NSW. This represented almost 80 per cent of funds being injected into the State's most drought affected communities.
More than 70 local roads were improved to assist farmers in the movement of livestock, produce and agricultural equipment. Many of the projects ranged from road widening, pavement work, improved signage and vegetation clearing.
As a result of the Drought Relief Heavy Vehicle Access Program more than 700 kilometres of road has been upgraded; facilitating better access for heavy vehicles travelling in response to the drought.
As a snapshot the program contributed towards:
- More than 10 pavement projects where more than 450 kilometres of local road has now been regraded,
- At least 20 road widening projects,
- Ten culvert improvements, and
- A series of vegetation clearing works.
Examples of success at a local level include:
- Forbes Shire Council will install a series of telemetry signs with LED display. These innovative signs improve the safety conditions for not just heavy vehicle operators but all road users travelling across nine of councils' local roads.
- Temora Shire Council will widen over four kilometres of Morangarell Road. Upon completion this will potentially unlock a 36 kilometre link between two regional roads; MR241 Milvale Road and MR398 Mary Gilmore Way. Currently, vehicles operating at Higher Mass Limits (HML) and wide loads are diverted away from Morangarell Road, adding an extra 3.6 kilometres per trip for each vehicle.
These improvements have delivered safer roads, reduced travel time, cost savings and improved journeys for our road users.
For further information on the program, please contact your Transport for NSW regional office.
* Submissions were merit based and assessed by an evaluation panel consisting of representatives from Transport for NSW and Local Government NSW.