About the Project

The Australian and NSW governments have provided $2 billion to deliver the M1 Pacific Motorway extension to Raymond Terrace and Hexham Straight projects. The extension will boost the regional economy and improve connectivity, road transport efficiency and safety for local and interstate motorists.

The project addresses a key national motorway ‘missing link’ between Sydney and Brisbane as the existing M1 Pacific Motorway, New England Highway and Pacific Highway carry some of the highest traffic volumes across the Hunter.

Once complete, the extension will remove up to 25,000 vehicles a day from key congestion and merge points along this corridor and will help keep freight, commuters and tourists moving.

The project includes 15 kilometres of dual carriageway and provides motorway access from the existing road network from four new interchanges at Black Hill, Tarro, Tomago and Raymond Terrace.

The project also includes a 2.6 kilometre viaduct over the Hunter River and floodplain, the Main North Rail Line, and the New England Highway. It will also provide new bridge crossings over local waterways at Tarro and Raymond Terrace, and an overpass for Masonite Road at Heatherbrae.

Project Benefits

The NSW and Australian Governments are committed to completing the M1 Pacific Motorway extension to Raymond Terrace project to ease congestion, improve traffic flow and reduce traffic volumes on the surrounding road network. The extension will transform the way people move to and from the Hunter and will improve travel times for commuters travelling from Sydney to Brisbane, helping motorists to save between 7 and 9 minutes travel time during peak periods on opening.

  1. 7-9 minutes reduction in travel time during peak periods
  2. Increased connectivity
  3. Better access for local traffic
  4. 5 traffic lights bypassed
  5. Removing up to 25,000 vehicles a day from existing roads
  6. Supporting up to 2700 direct and indirect jobs during construction

Project need

The road network in the project area currently experiences high traffic demand, with demand expected to increase as populations within the Hunter and Newcastle area grow.

The project would provide greater capacity on the network and provide increased connectivity for these rapidly growing regions and better access for local traffic.

The existing road network is a critical location in the road corridor from Sydney to Brisbane. Due to its geographical location, the existing transport hubs of the Port of Newcastle and RAAF Base Williamtown/Newcastle Airport, and the combined influence of the broader Hunter Region, the road network in this area plays an important role in the movement of freight across NSW and Australia.

There are two remaining locations on the east coast corridor linking Sydney to Brisbane, where the route is an urban road with traffic lights - at Coffs Harbour and at Black Hill, Hexham, Tomago and Heatherbrae. The project, together with Coffs Harbour bypass, would provide the remaining major upgrades to complete a free flowing dual carriageway route between Sydney and Brisbane.

Once complete, the extension will remove up to 25,000 vehicles a day away from key congestion and merge points along this corridor and will help keep freight, commuters and tourists moving.

Supporting NSW amid COVID-19

The health and safety of our workforce and the wider community will be top of mind as we carry out our work. This will include ensuring our workers follow the appropriate hygiene and social distancing guidelines.