WHEN it comes to grand plans that whither on the vine before the vine is even planted you can't go past the longest road tunnel in Australia.
The 11 km tunnel to bypass the notorious Blackheath bottleneck was one of several big ticket items put on indefinite hold this week, the announcement coming in the midst of information sessions on the project under way from Hartley to Katoomba.
Seems we've reached what one Minister called 'saturation point' in the number of major projects that could proceed on previous schedule.
So will the planners now go back to the earlier concept for a shorter tunnel underneath Blackheath itself or will peak period motorists have to be patient for quite some time yet?
And will the much less complex (and costly) widening and straightening of the highway from Hartley to Bowenfels, fiercely opposed by a Hartley lobby group, or the much needed section from Katoomba to Blackheath go ahead?
And the BIG question; will anyone driving today ever get to drive through that tunnel?
HOW well we know a dab of paint can transform a building or an entire street. Eastern Main Street in Lithgow creates an even better impression these days with a particularly tasteful paint job on what used to be known as the Railway Institute, today home to a pet shop, Barnados and Youthworx. Instant transformation and perhaps inspiration to other landlords whose properties are even more in need. We won't hold our breath. Some years back a Main Street project was offering free paint if the owners just paid the labour.
WELCOME to Winter 2022. Right on schedule too. Rarely gets much worse than that extreme Arctic blast this week. But it was good for (some) business. With a wind chill around minus five on Tuesday Lithgow Workwear in Main Street sold over 100 items of thermal underwear in just a few hours.
ADJUSTING a pre election promise, Albo's deputy Richard Miles said this week there was 'no quick fix' to rising energy bills. Well actually there is; just drop the GST component and an instant 10 per cent reduction. In a past life Lithgow and like minded extreme climate councils sought just such a concession. It gained momentum and Prime Minister in waiting Kim Beazley was sympathetic to the cause but when Kevin Rudd muscled in he dismissed the idea out of hand.
THE road around the lake front at Lake Wallace is, understandably, in a dreadful state after the saturation of recent months. Perhaps a good time to consider the implementation of one way traffic, a simple safety need seemingly obvious to everyone except our decision makers.
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