Regional Jobs the Focus as Work Starts on New Overtaking Lane at Mirrool

Jobs available in regional NSW continue to grow thanks to the $75 million Newell Highway project and the Newell Highway Program Alliance.

Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke said that to date, the Alliance has completed 23 new overtaking lanes with seven more in construction and 10 in planning.

“Work started on Tuesday March 29 on a southbound overtaking lane at Mirrool, about 15 kilometres north of Ardlethan, to provide another opportunity to pass slow-moving and heavy vehicles on the Newell,” Ms Cooke said.

“The project will support around 120 jobs, including 60 locals, and is expected to take seven months to complete, weather permitting.”

“Local shires in the Cootamundra electorate including Bland, Weddin, Narrandera and Coolamon have all benefitted in many different ways including employment, through the Newell Highway upgrade.”

Former Dubbo High School student Hailee Strawns had never considered a career in project management until the NSW Infrastructure Traineeship Program opened her eyes to a new world of opportunity.

Hailee, who completed Year 12 in 2019, came across the traineeship program while studying a Diploma of Business at the University of NSW.

She began her traineeship with Transport for NSW in Dubbo and has now started an eight-month rotation with the Newell Highway Program Alliance, a partnership delivering approximately 40 new overtaking lanes along the full length of the Newell Highway.

“I thought the traineeship was an amazing opportunity for school leavers, especially for regional people,” Hailee said.

“Once I started the traineeship with Transport for NSW, I realised project management was a lot like business – it had many similarities and I loved that.”

Work will be carried out on a two-week roster, weather permitting:

Week 1: 7am to 6pm from Tuesday to Friday, 8am to 6pm on Saturday and Sunday.

Week 2: 7am to 6pm from Monday to Thursday, no work from Friday to Monday.

For the safety of motorists and workers, changed traffic conditions will be in place including reduced speed limits of 40 km/h and 60 km/h during work hours and 80 km/h after hours.

Motorists are advised to drive to the conditions and follow the directions of all signs and traffic control.

The Australian and NSW governments are jointly funding a $1.455 billion upgrade of the Newell Highway, with the Australian Government contributing $60 million to build new overtaking lanes and the NSW Government contributing $168 million.

More information on the Newell Highway overtaking lanes is available on the Transport for NSW website.

More information about the NSW Infrastructure Traineeship program is available on the NSW Government website.