Next NSW government must extend M4: NRMA


NRMA backs upgrade of M4 motorway in NSW, saying it will cut travel times by up to 30 minutes

February 16, 2011

Motoring body the NRMA has called on politicians to back an extension of the M4 motorway in Sydney, saying it will cut travel times by up to 30 minutes.

The route is plagued by congestion, with NRMA local director Dawn Fraser labelling it one of the biggest transport challenges faced in western Sydney.

NSW voters will go the polls on March 26, and Fraser says there is broad support in the electorate for an upgrade to the M4.

"We’ll be holding the politicians to account this state election. We want to see a specific commitment from the next government as to when they will start building the long awaited M4 extension," she says.

The NRMA is backing a report on the M4 extension to argue its case for action.

Urban Planner Ed Blakely and engineering firm SKM estimate building an 8.5km tunnel from Concord to Sydney’s CBD and a light rail along Parramatta Roads will cost $7.38 billion. It says the Government could recoup $10.8 billion over 25 years with toll revenue.

According to the report, travel times for inner-west residents will be up to 30 minutes faster, while traffic along Parramatta Road is expected to ease.

The NRMA says a recent survey of 1200 residents it conducted found that 72 percent supported an extension of the M4.

"We have a solution to the congestion problems in Sydney’s west, now all we need is the commitment from the next government as to when they will start building the long awaited M4 extension," Fraser says.

"By finishing the M$, the government will be able to transform Parramatta Road from one of the most congested and financially under-utilised corridors in Sydney to a corridor that delivers real benefits to residents and local businesses."

The NRMA survey showed 84 percent believe an extension will reduce travel times. It says 91 percent of respondents will use the tunnel without a toll, with the figure dropping to 74 percent if a toll is applied.


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