The south of Dubbo will soon be future-proofed for further growth and development, along with added connectivity to the east, with Stage 2 of the Boundary Road Extension project nearing completion.

The major project to extend Boundary Road was initiated to provide connectivity for both traffic and pedestrians to Keswick and Southlakes residential estates, and a secondary means of accessing Saint John’s College, the Christian School and the Skillset Senior College on Sheraton Road.

The project has not been without its challenges and delays, however, Dubbo Regional Council’s (DRC) Manager Infrastructure Strategy and Design said it will be well worth the wait. “This key arterial road forms part of the greater Dubbo Transportation Strategy which will tie in with the Southern Distributor, connecting commuters from the south to the east. It will also provide a secondary access for the east Dubbo school precinct and ultimately Blueridge Business Park, easing significant congestion on Wheelers Lane in the morning and afternoon reducing the driving time for commuters.”

“When designing this new portion of the road it was very important to include the essential infrastructure that would allow the city to grow in the years to come, without ripping up the road to install the required services at a later date. The extension of Boundary Road now contains all the required underground services for future expansion, both commercially and residentially, including gas, NBN, water, gravity sewer stormwater infrastructure and electricity,” said Mr Godfrey.

Mayor of Dubbo Regional Council, Mathew Dickerson said he commends the staff for their forward thinking, “There have been significant announcements in relation to South East Dubbo. Some large commercial developments such as the land swap between Council and the RSL have meant there is an increased requirement for utility services in the South East to accommodate for the increasing growth for decades to come, so I am pleased the staff have taken the extra time to ensure the whole area is well equipped to expand,” said Mr Dickerson.

Stage 2 of the extension currently under construction, between Alexandrina Avenue and Sheraton Road, is approximately 1,100m in length. So far, Council’s Infrastructure Delivery branch and its subcontractors have installed around 95% of stormwater infrastructure, the road pavement has been constructed to the base course, kerb and guttering is complete, water mains are nearing completion, retaining walls through the hill cutting have been constructed and the gravity sewer mains have all been installed along with the other required underground utility services. An extensive underground low and high voltage electrical duct system has also been installed to facilitate additional connections to the Keswick Zone Substation behind Dawson Park and new subdivisions in the area when eventually required.

Major works will commence on 24 January, primarily at the intersection of Sheraton Road and Boundary Road with a focus on the construction of the roundabout in this area, along with the installation of footpaths and street lights. The project is now scheduled for full completion by April 2022.

DRC’s CEO Murray Wood said he understands the community is eager to have the project finished. “It’s no secret the project has experienced a number of unavoidable delays. A few of these have involved the high voltage solar cables from a nearby solar farm which are encased in thermal concrete making it extremely challenging to work around. Many services have had to cross the mass poured concrete which required coordinating the temporary shutdown of the solar farm for safety reasons. The consultation and planning around this took time and we appreciate the co-operation from that company.

“Of course like many other projects, COVID-19 did affect the project with the unavailability of contractors and the redeployment of DRC operational staff to the testing and vaccination clinic. There were also significant delays associated with the dedication of the road corridor for the project and the electrical conduits, which could not be installed until the road was formally dedicated, a lengthy process in itself,” said Mr Wood.

Despite the delays, Council is expecting to deliver this project on budget which is forecast to be $8.5M. Council has made savings where possible. For example, a large chain trencher was used to cut and remove the solid basalt hill crest. Council saved $250k in materials by crushing the excavated rock and using it as select fill and sub base material for the new road.

Stage 1 of the Boundary Road extension between Wheelers Lane and Alexandrina Avenue runs for 520m was completed in late 2018.

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Last Edited: 17 Jul 2023

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