Frequently Asked Questions

  • About 22,000 vehicles a day use Picton Road, of which 23 per cent, or 5,100 are heavy vehicles. Traffic along Picton Road is expected to significantly increase as the committed land use changes intensify, and as freight movements continue to increase between Port Kembla and Western Sydney.

  • We are working with Wollondilly Shire Council and the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment to ensure the Picton Road upgrade is integrated with the Wilton Growth Area vision.

  • An upgrade of Picton Road would support growing communities and businesses across Western Sydney and the Illawarra Shoalhaven by providing improved and safer access to jobs, services, education and suppliers between the neighbouring regions.

    People regularly move between the two regions for employment, education and recreation, while goods are transferred between the two regions industrial precincts and intermodal facilities. In the future transport demands between these regions are expected to grow significantly. The upgrades will be developed to cater for this expected transport demand growth.

  • During the five-year period between 2017 and 2021 there were 82 crashes on Picton Road between the Nepean River and the M1 Princes Motorway. These crashes resulted in six people being killed and 70 people being injured, including 34 serious injuries.

Picton Road and M31 Hume Motorway preferred option

  • A Diverging Diamond Interchange (DDI) allows two directions of traffic to temporarily cross to the left side of the road. It moves high volumes of traffic through an intersection without increasing the number of lanes and traffic lights. It is easy to navigate, eliminates last-minute lane changes, and provides better sight distance at turns. The design reduces congestion and moves high volumes of traffic without the need to increase the number of lanes in an interchange.
  • DDIs are a relatively new concept in Australia and the design innovation is that it allows free flowing turns when exiting and entering Picton Road with right-turning traffic does not have to give way to opposing traffic.

    The Picton Road and M31 Hume Motorway DDI is the second to be proposed in NSW, with one currently proposed for Australia Avenue, Homebush and three DDIs now operational in Queensland.

  • In response to feedback, we have developed a DDI as the preferred option for the interchange at Picton Road and the M31 Hume Motorway because it provided the least impact to the surrounding area while improving safety, reliability and efficient travel when compared to other options.
  • A technical assessment of the design, standards, and specifications of DDIs across Australia and around the world was carried out as part of the selection and design development process.

    We assessed 13 different options for the interchange. Options included double roundabouts, grade separated roundabouts, a four-way signalised intersection with and without a bridge, grade separated ramps, loop interchanges and continuous interchanges with loops. We identified an intersection with traffic lights, configured as a DDI, was the best outcome when compared with other options.

  • The DDI design would allow free flowing turns when exiting and entering Picton Road and reduce the number of conflicts with oncoming traffic, resulting in fewer traffic light phases, making the interchange safer and more efficient.
  • We are seeking feedback on the preferred option to help refine the design and prepare a Review of Environmental Factors (REF).
  • Feedback on the preferred option will be used to help develop the project. Feedback will be responded to in a report following the display of the REF in 2023.
  • Timing and funding for construction of the interchange are yet to be confirmed.
  • A concept design will be developed, and further environmental studies will be carried out. The REF will be displayed in 2023.
  • We have divided the upgrade into three project areas to ensure we can focus on the areas you told us to prioritise while allowing us to continue concurrent planning for all sections.
  • The western section of the Picton Road upgrade extends from the Nepean River to Almond Street, Wilton and includes the Picton Road and M31 Hume Motorway interchange.
  • An upgrade of Picton Road would support growing communities and businesses across Western Sydney and the Illawarra-Shoalhaven by providing improved access to jobs, services, education and recreation between the neighbouring regions.

    Our goal is to provide a reliable and safe road network to access high value employment and social amenities.

  • We are exploring options for improved access, better separation between heavy and light vehicles, speed limit reviews and improvements to the road alignment and surface quality.
  • The NSW Government has allocated $44 million over four years for the planning of the upgrade of Picton Road and the Australian Government has committed $95.6 million to the planning of the upgrade of Picton Road and Picton bypass projects.
  • In April 2022 we released our Community Consultation Report based on feedback during consultation in late 2021. This included identifying current issues and concerns using and accessing Picton Road, as well as suggestions for the future upgrade.
  • Feedback helped us to develop options to reduce travel times, improve road safety and ensure the future design caters for expected future population and economic growth.

    In general, the feedback was clear that the community want to see the upgrade happen as soon as possible and identified the need for this to happen before future population growth in Wilton further impacts the existing road network.

    The top four most important considerations for the upgrade raised included:

    • improved safety and access in general by providing dual lanes and median separation in both directions.
    • improved safety at key access and congestion points onto Picton Road including Pembroke Parade, Almond Street, M1 Princes Motorway and M31 Hume Motorway (noting that there are some upgrades at key locations that would be upgraded as part of the surrounding urban redevelopment by the developer).
    • better active and public transport connections between key centres to enable growth and access to employment, housing, educational and recreational opportunities in the surrounding regions
    • protection and preservation of flora and fauna and cultural/heritage items
  • Safety is the number one consideration as we progress the Picton Road upgrade.

    Feedback told us Picton Road and the M31 Hume Motorway interchange was of particular concern, with access to and from the interchange considered a significant issue.

    There are delays, congestion and frustration for those using the interchange contributing to less reliable and safe access to and from Picton Road. As traffic, development and population continue to grow, we must be able to accommodate more traffic through the interchange.

  • Picton Road is the key freight link between Port Kembla and the Illawarra, with the emerging Western Sydney Parklands and Aerotropolis, as well as Canberra and Melbourne.

    To meet future demand, the upgrade would be designed to improve safety for heavy vehicles. Heavy vehicles comprise almost 25 per cent of the 22,000 plus daily vehicle movements on Picton Road.

    Freight customers and operators told us they want to see improved safety and efficiency, less congestion and interchange improvements at both the M1 Princes Motorway and M31 Hume Motorway, as well as improved rest area facilities.

    The future development of the port at Port Kembla and the increasing importance of Western Sydney require direct, capable, and efficient connectivity between these two locations.

    The growth of residential and commercial centres in Wilton and Greater Macarthur will only increase demand on transport corridors between the Illawarra and south-western Sydney.

  • Picton Road needs to cater for future growth associated with developments around the Wilton Growth Area.

    The area surrounding the interchange will grow by 15,000 new homes (40,000 new residents) over the next 20-30 years.

    New residents want to see the upgrade facilitate safer, more efficient transport connections for residents and communities to the broader Illawarra-Shoalhaven region for employment, education, and recreation purposes.

    This upgrade is needed to ensure that predicted growth will utilise an improved road network in terms of safety, capacity and efficiency.

  • We are seeking feedback on the preferred option to help develop the project. Feedback will be responded to in a report following the display of the REF in 2023.
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