Great Western Highway looking towards Hartley Valley

Great Western Highway Upgrade Program - Katoomba to Lithgow

Together, the Australian and NSW Governments are investing more than $4.5 billion towards upgrading the Great Western Highway between Katoomba and Lithgow. The Upgrade will reduce congestion, deliver safer, more efficient and reliable journeys for those travelling in, around and through the Blue Mountains, and better connect communities in the Central West.

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Latest news

AUG 2021

AUG 2021Air quality monitoring station installation

Transport for NSW is installing three air quality monitoring stations at key points along the proposed Great Western Highway Upgrade corridor. The air quality monitoring stations will gather information about the existing air quality and are expected to be in place for 12 to 18 months.

Project information

The Great Western Highway Upgrade Program is an infrastructure program of national importance. It will make the Blue Mountains and the Central West and Orana more attractive places to live, and will unlock the potential of regional NSW.

The NSW Government has progressively upgraded sections of the Great Western Highway to make it safer and more reliable for all road users. This upgrade will complete the final 34 km connection of a modern dual-carriageway link across the Blue Mountains.

The Great Western Highway Upgrade Program consists of:

  • Medlow Bath Upgrade
    An upgrade and duplication of the existing surface road corridor with intersection improvements and a new pedestrian bridge.
    We anticipate that the Review of Environmental Factors will be exhibited for consultation in June 2021, and construction is set to begin late 2022.
  • East Upgrade - Katoomba to Medlow Bath and Medlow Bath to Blackheath
    Upgrade, duplication and widening of the existing surface road corridor, with connections to a tunnel portal at Blackheath.
    We anticipate that the Review of Environmental Factors will be exhibited for consultation in October 2021.
  • West Upgrade - Little Hartley to Lithgow
    Upgrade, duplication and widening of the existing surface road corridor, with connections to a tunnel portal at Little Hartley.
    We anticipate that the Review of Environmental Factors will be exhibited for consultation in October 2021.
  • Central Upgrade - Blackheath to Little Hartley
    Construction of a tunnel bypass of Blackheath and Mount Victoria, with connectivity between the two proposed tunnels currently under further investigation.
    We anticipate that the Environmental Impact Statement will be exhibited for consultation mid 2022.

Blackheath tunnel options consultation October - November 2020

The preferred strategic route option for the bypass at Blackheath was released for consultation on 12 October 2020, focusing upon a long tunnel with various portal options. Consultation continued until 28 November. The engagement included three community information sessions, held online in order to comply with advice from NSW Health and Covid-19 restrictions. 241 people booked into the online consultation sessions, while a further 125 people watched the recorded sessions at a later date. Seven phone consultations were also held, at the request of individual residents. More than 6211 people visited the online virtual consultation portal and more than 2486 items of feedback were received by the project team. You can view or download the community consultation summary report (PDF, 5.52Mb).

Medlow Bath upgrade consultation June - August 2020

The strategic design for the upgrade of the Great Western Highway through Medlow Bath was released for community consultation on 29 June, with consultation continuing to 31 August 2020. The engagement included eight community information sessions, held online in order to comply with advice from NSW Health and Covid-19 restrictions. The sessions were attended by 70 people. A number of targeted information sessions were also held with local businesses, groups and associations and a number of phone consultations were also held. More than 850 items of feedback were received by the project team.You can view or download the community consultation summary report (PDF, 3.7Mb).

Katoomba to Lithgow strategic design consultation November - December 2019

The strategic design for the upgrade of the Great Western Highway from Katoomba to Lithgow was released for community consultation on 07 November 2019, with consultation continuing to 16 December 2019. The engagement included nine community information sessions, two pop up displays and one public meeting held along the corridor at locations including Katoomba, Medlow Bath, Blackheath, Mount Victoria, Hartley and Lithgow. The sessions were attended by 1350 people and 1759 items of feedback were received by the project team. You can view or download the community consultation summary report (PDF, 18.5Mb).

The Blackheath Co-Design Committee (BCC) was formed by Transport for NSW in March 2020, following feedback from the community. The Committee included stakeholder group representatives, selected community representatives, and representatives from the Blue Mountains City Council and emergency services.

The BCC was not a decision making body, but the outcome of the BCC is an important input into the Government's decision-making process for determining a preferred route option and design as the program progresses.

The Committee's unanimously preferred option was for a long tunnel underneath Blackheath.

Blackheath Co-Design Committee Meeting Minutes

View or download:

Project documents

Project notifications

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August 2021 project notification

Field investigations in Medlow Bath from Thursday 19 August to Sunday 31 October 2021.

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August 2021 project notification

Air quality monitoring station installation in Blackheath, Mount Victoria and Little Hartley from Monday 16 August to Monday 13 September 2021.

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May 2021 project notification

Safety Upgrade works, Medlow Bath, from Wednesday 5 May.

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April 2021 project notification

Geotechnical investigation work on the Great Western Highway in Medlow Bath.

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March 2021 project notification

Investigation work on the Great Western Highway from Katoomba to Blackheath.

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March 2021 project notification

Investigation work on the Great Western Highway from Little Hartley to Lithgow.

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February 2021 project notification

Medlow Bath Rail corridor investigation work.

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January 2021 project notification

Geotechnical investigation work between Blackheath and Little Hartley.

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December 2020 project notification

Medlow Bath Safety Works.

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Fact sheets

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August 2021 Air quality monitoring stations fact sheet

Great Western Highway Upgrade Program

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August 2021 Air quality fact sheet

Great Western Highway Upgrade Program

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Media releases

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31 August 2021

Preservation of Aboriginal heritage a key part of Blue Mountains Highway upgrade

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27 August 2021

Medlow Bath highway design consultion extended

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17 August 2021

Baseline air quality testing through Blue Mountains as part of great Western Highway upgrade

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27 July 2021

Community shapes refined design for Medlow Bath Highway upgrade

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14 June 2021

Great Western Highway upgrade powering ahead

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14 June 2021

Safer passage through Medlow Bath ahead of full highway upgrade

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4 June 2021

Archaeological dig to explore Aboriginal connection to Blue Mountains

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3 May 2021

Australia’s longest road tunnel proposed for Great Western Highway Upgrade

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3 March 2021

Doing the groundwork for highway upgrade

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18 February 2021

Highway history to be preserved for future generations

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18 December 2020

Contracts awarded for Great Western Highway upgrade works

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17 December 2020

Safety drives highway upgrade at Medlow Bath

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30 October 2020

More time to have your say on Blackheath tunnel

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12 October 2020

Tunnel options best fit for Blackheath

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1 October 2020

Heading west this long weekend? Making your journey home faster and safer

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28 September 2020

Contract awarded for Great Western Highway upgrade through Medlow Bath

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6 August 2020

Medlow Bath residents have more time to consider Great Western Highway design

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7 June 2020

Medlow Bath residents invited to have their say on Great Western Highway design

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4 June 2020

Two possible bypasses of Blackheath considered by committee

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10 June 2020

Great Western Highway upgrade west of Lithgow

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13 May 2020

Locals have their say on Great Western Highway upgrade

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28 February 2020

Blackheath locals to help co-design Great Western Highway upgrade

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3 December 2019

Blackheath community invited to meeting to learn more about the Great Western Highway upgrade

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7 November 2019

Have your say on Great Western Highway

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11 March 2019

Green light for $2.5 billion Great western highway duplication

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Contact us

If you have any questions or would like more information please contact our project team:

Phone: 1800 953 777

Email: gwhd@transport.nsw.gov.au

Post: Great Western Highway Upgrade Program - PO Box 2332, Orange NSW 2800

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