PLANNING is on track for the first stage of the multi-billion dollar duplication of the Great Western Highway from Katoomba to Lithgow to start next year.
Revised designs for the 1.2-kilometre duplication at Medlow Bath are on display and online sessions with the project team are continuing this week.
The government says the Medlow Bath project will upgrade the existing highway to a four-lane divided carriageway of two lanes of traffic in each direction, either side of a central median with planted trees.
It says the work is expected to take around 20 months to complete, weather permitting, and is due to start in late 2022.
It says average daily traffic volumes on the highway vary from around 20,000 vehicles per day near Katoomba to around 8500 vehicles per day towards Forty Bends, near Lithgow, and are growing between one per cent and 1.7 per cent per annum.
Review of environmental factors documents for the section from Katoomba to Medlow Bath and Medlow Bath to Blackheath; and the section from Little Hartley to Lithgow are due to be available for exhibition and consultation late this year.
The NSW Government says the environmental assessment for the section from Blackheath to Little Hartley will be available for exhibition and consultation in mid-2022.
It is considering building Australia's longest road tunnel in this section to get traffic out of Blackheath and Mount Victoria.
The Medlow Bath Action Group says the highway duplication through the village "will turn the town centre into a five-lane freight corridor wedged between the Hydro Majestic Hotel and the train station, both heritage listed".
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