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HomeLatest NewsBeaches tunnel officially canned

Beaches tunnel officially canned

The Northern Beaches Tunnel is officially off the cards after a NSW Government announcement this evening that the project is cancelled.

A memo to stakeholders this evening, 8 September 2023, advises:

“Today the NSW Government has confirmed the decision to cancel this project. Transport for NSW will write to the Department of Planning and Environment to withdraw its State Significant Infrastructure Application for the Beaches Link and Gore Hill Freeway Connection project.

Work will continue on the Western Harbour Tunnel and Warringah Freeway Upgrade.”

If you would like more information, we advise contacting the project team on 1800 139 389 or via whtbl@transport.nsw.gov.au

This ends years of uncertainty on the project. The newly elected government has previously reported to stakeholders that the major project was “on hold” and property acquisitions no longer underway.

Manly Observer understand more than 20 of the 35 property acquisitions had already occurred.

While a detailed Environmental Impact Statement has been completed for the Beaches Link project, the NSW Government has not granted planning approval for the project,” an earlier letter to stakeholders reads.

The broken orange lines show where the Beaches Link tunnel will be, the unbroken orange will be the roads leading in and out of the tunnel.
The broken orange lines show where the Beaches Link tunnel was going to be, the unbroken orange will were the roads leading in and out of the tunnel.

Work will continue on the Western Harbour Tunnel and Warringah Freeway Upgrade, including enabling works on the freeway.

Diggers at the Rozelle Interchange. The Western Harbour Tunnel, due for completion in 2026, will still go ahead.. Photo: Alec Smart

The NSW Government said it will also review the local road needs in light of the changed plans.

Manly MP James Griffin said a review was not needed.

“Don’t rip off the Northern Beaches, spend at least some of the funds intended for the Northern Beaches Tunnel on local road and infrastructure upgrades,” he said this evening.

“NSW Labor are proposing a road review. We don’t need a road review, what we need is them to get on with the job. All the work on understanding the challenges on our road network has already been done as part of preparation for the tunnel.

“They’ve axed the tunnel, they can at least invest in our local roads.”

The Beaches Link, also known as the Northern Beaches Tunnel, was scheduled to start in 2023 and be completed by 2028 according to the timelines provided in the Environmental Impact Statement, pending planning approval. It had been designed to have two portals (entries/exits) – one in Balgowlah and one in Seaforth – taking vehicles through 7kms of tunnels under Middle Harbour and the lower North Shore, connecting with the Warringah Freeway in Cammeray.

You can read our previous coverage on the project here:

Straight answers hard to come by in Northern Beaches Tunnel future

Beaches Link Tunnel inquiry

A look at community concerns with Beaches Link Tunnel impact

Want to know more?

Government information is available here.

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Manly Observer is an experiment in providing non-sensationalist hyperlocal news on Sydney’s Northern Beaches. We cover the big news across the LGA, but with a hyper focus on the Manly electorate encompassing Balgowlah, Seaforth, Freshwater, Brookvale and Curl Curl up to Dee Why. It is run by those living in the community for the benefit of an informed community. We care about an informed and connected community. That’s it. Simple. Thank you for your support in keeping quality local news alive!

Kim Smee, Editor

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