The concept design for the new roundabout at a deadly intersection at Tumut has been unveiled.
Minister for Regional Transport and Roads Paul Toole said work has progressed quickly since the announcement of a roundabout in October as the Centre for Road Safety’s preferred option to improve safety at the intersection.
“The concept design is now complete, showing the big picture view of what the improved intersection will look like,” Mr Toole said.
“The new roundabout will improve safety and traffic flow and will be big enough to accommodate heavy vehicle movements.”
Mr Toole said the design will be refined further in the new year after environmental assessment, utilities and property investigations are carried out.”
Construction of the roundabout is expected to start late 2021 and take about 10 months to build, weather and approvals permitting.
It would be large enough to cater for both A double and B-double heavy vehicles.
The former Tumut Shire Council has been advocating for an upgrade at the intersection for close to two decades.
Despite numerous crashes each year – and a $70 million allocation for improvements along the breadth of Gocup Road in 2015 – the intersection has seen only minor improvements.
The warnings from locals that it was only a matter of time before the intersection claimed a life tragically became a reality in May when a car failed to give way and ploughed into a truck.
A 29-year-old pregrant Canberra woman, her four year old daughter and unborn baby died in the crash.
It sparked another review into the intersection by the state government, just over two years after it allocated $500,000 for a detailed study of the intersection.
In February of last year the government allocated over 1.8 million dollars for traffic lights in its budget, but that plan never came to fruition.
Instead, about a million dollars was spent to improve signage, line marking and build refuges – work which was only completed after the fatality.
Snowy Valleys Council mayor James Hayes and other locals have argued a new road should be built with the intersection of Gocup Road to come out at near the Saleyards.
But the goverment argues that’s not the answer, saying it would create t-intersections to allow access to properties, take longer to build due to property acquisitions, and potentially create complex environmental issues.
The planned roundabout at the intersection of Gocup Road and Snowy Mountains Highway is likely to impact on the nearby wetlands, meaning extensive planning will be required.