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Time to recognise the Princes Highway sth of Batemans Bay

The Beagle Editor,

As you would be aware the Princes Highway is part of National Highway 1 and plays its part as a main highway going from South Australia through Victoria and New South Wales to connect with Sydney where it becomes the Pacific Highway. The Princes Highway services many highly populated towns and regions and is recognised for its key role as a primary essential access for community, for regional transport and for economic development. It even has its own panel that oversees the route from Sydney to Adelaide who lobby the State and Federal Governments for funding and recognition. The South East Area Transport Strategy (SEATS) has pushed hard for decades to see this highway gain the recognition it deserves and the funding to see the accident rates reduced. The areas serviced by the Princes Highway, including the Eurobodalla Shire, are areas identified by State Governments for accommodating significant population increases now, and in the foreseeable future. The Eurobodalla Shire’s population is expected to significantly increase in the next few years. A high percentage of the shires population is aged. They require a high standard of road and highway access for many reasons. While there is a domestic airlink into Moruya the Eurobodalla shire is really only accessed by road, being the Princes Highway and the Kings Highway. The Princes Highway, traversing through the Eurobodalla Shire is around 140 kilometres in total length and passes through our towns and each has become a man made bottle neck. Over recent years there has been a marked increase in traffic through these towns Batemans Bay, Mogo, Moruya, Bodalla and Narooma should be by-passed. In fact a new Princes Highway corridor needs to be identified and developed. It is disappointing to see Council having to revisit their desire to have a round table discussion with Federal and State roads ministers as they moved to do three years ago. That Council request was ignored but the recently raised second attempt to have staff organise a round table meeting might gain momentum in the lead up to the next Council election in September 2020. Three years of discussions and lobbying lost with not a cent forthcoming from State or Federal Government to the highway south of Batemans Bay to the Victoria border until now, where $30m has bee granted to finish the intersection to the Spine Road that is at least a decade overdue. While looking at the big picture there remain many dangerous areas on the Princes Highway Route that need short term action with several “T” Intersections that are dangerous and accident areas. Runny ford Road and the Princes Highway intersection between Mogo and Bateman's Bay, Shelley Rd at the Moruya Industrial area and the Princes Highway, Larrys Mountain Road and the Princes Highway, Donnelly's Road and the Princes Highway, Hector McWilliam Drive to Tuross Head is still unsatisfactory and sub optimal. The Princes Highway in NSW is a State funded road, but needs to reclassified as a Road of National Importance to be better recognised and properly funded. Allan Brown Catalina

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