Coffs Harbour Bypass – 26 years in the making

Shortlisted contractors have finally been announced for the 14 km Coffs Harbour Bypass project that, if completed on time, will have spanned 26 years.

NSW Roads and Maritime Services first investigated the potential project in 2001 as part of the Pacific Highway Upgrade along the Sydney to Brisbane corridor, with a preferred route confirmed in 2004, followed by a concept design report in 2008.

Three shortlisted contractors for the Coffs Harbour Bypass project were recently announced:  Acciona Seymour Whyte JV, CPB Contractors Webuild JV, and Ferrovial Gamuda JV. The three JV consortia have been selected to formally tender for the single design and construct project, with the NSW Government saying the tendering phase extends to March 2022. The state government expects to announce the winning contractor in mid-next year.

While minor works commenced on the project in December 2020, the federal government anticipates major construction works to start in early 2023 and be fully completed by late 2027. The $1.8 billion project will include a four-lane divided motorway from Englands Road in the south, connecting with the newly upgraded Sapphire to Woolgoolga section in the north.

The bypass route travels through the North Boambee Valley, then through the Roberts Hill ridgeline and traverses the foothills of the Coffs Harbour basin west and north to Korora Hill. Three tunnels and four interchanges are part of the project: Roberts Hill Tunnel; Shephards Lane Tunnel; Gatelys Road Tunnel; and Korora Hill Interchange; Coramba Road Interchange (pictured); and Englands Road Interchange.

Image source: NSW Government

About the author

Desi Corbett

Desi is the Editor of Concrete in Australia and at the helm of our magazine for 8 years. She was behind the Institute's weekly news bulletins from 2016-2021 and is now writing our focused news items. Desi has been an engineering news and features journalist/editor across all disciplines since 2013 - part of a 30-year career writing for a wide range of industries.