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Major Milestone as Australia’s Pacific Highway Upgrade Partially Opens

General / 18 December 2017

In a major project milestone, the Warrell Creek to Nambucca Heads Pacific Highway Upgrade has partially opened to the public.

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Currently being constructed by Ferrovial Agroman and Acciona as the Pacifico Joint Venture, the $550 million project forms part of the 105km Pacific Highway upgrade between Port Macquarie and Coffs Harbour.

Targeted at improving road safety and relieving congestion, the project involves the design and build of 19.5km of new dual carriageway road, in addition to various bridges and interchanges. The project is jointly funded by the NSW and Australian governments. The Pacific Highway connects Sydney and Brisbane, two of Australia’s largest cities and is one of the country’s busiest roads.

A key element and challenging piece of engineering successfully delivered by the Pacifico Joint Venture was the bridge over the Nambucca river. Stretching 850m in length and with 21 spans, the bridge was built using 42m U-Girders cast in a precast facility purposely built as part of the project. The U-Girders built are the first of their kind to be implemented on an Australian Pacific Highway project.

The project has been constructed utilising more than 80% of a local workforce of members from Macksville, the Nambucca Valley and its surrounding suburbs.

With an excellent safety performance from the outset, the project reached more than 2,5m hours worked without a Lost Time Incident in 2016, setting a new record within the Pacific Highway projects.

The project has also been recognised in 2017 as an ABA100 Winner of the Australian Business Award (5 Awards) Business Innovation and Sustainability.

Ignacio Clopes, International Director Europe Asia Australia, Ferrovial Agroman, said: “The partial opening of the highway in New South Wales marks a significant step, further establishing our presence in the Australian market. Ferrovial’s presence on the continent has strengthened since this first major project was awarded to the firm in 2015. We look forward to continuing to deliver these milestones safely, and delivering value for all stakeholders concerned.”

Enrique Blanco, Managing Director, Ferrovial Agroman Australia and New Zealand, said: “We are delighted to see such value being delivered to our client, RMS, and the local communities with the safe delivery of a vital part of the Pacific Highway Upgrade. Having three of the four Ferrovial business lines becoming firmly rooted in the market has meant that we are able to offer the end-to-end solutions that have been key in delivering this project.”

Guillermo Ripado, Operations Director for Ferrovial Agroman Australia said: “This is a great milestone for the Pacific Highway upgrade and we are extremely happy having been part of the team that made it possible. I’d like to congratulate the whole RMS and Ferrovial Agroman team for this achievement and encourage them to continue the good work until the full opening is achieved”.

The Premier of New South Wales Gladys Berejiklian, NSW Roads Minister Melinda Pavey, and the Federal Member Luke Hartsuyker formally opened the road at an event that gave members of the public the opportunity to walk across the Nambucca River bridge.

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