Submissions report- April 2009

 

Submission

nu

Mount Victoria to Lithgow

Great Western Highway upgrade

Submissions report

Corridors in which routes may be feasible

April 2009

mber Individual / organisation Summary of comment

1 Individual Cutting off Lithgow will impact on CBD.

1 Individual Elevated parts of any of the options very scenic and reduce road kill.

2 Individual

Newnes Report - There appears to be a contradiction between sections 13 and 21 regarding removal of vegetation

(ie 70ha of undisturbed woodland versus degraded vegetation quality with few endangered species. Is this a

contradiction? If so, does it have an impact on costing of corridor?

 

2 Individual

Cost per metre for the Newnes route is surprisingly high. Cardno software devised the proposed route as line of

best fit through all the identified and weighted constraints. Should more weight have been given to engineering

constraints?

 

2 Individual

Section 13 Newnes Report re construction of road in immediate vicinity of drinking water supply not appropriate.

Would this not also be the case for Hartley Valley, which is controlled by Sydney Catchment Authority? Wouldn't

proposed roadworks within Sydney Water Catchment be more significant than proposed bridge in Lithgow? Has

the matter been considered when comparing Newnes corridor to base corridor?

 

2 Individual

Newnes report section 16.4 re Jenolan Caves Road connection - What is the nature of the small deviation? Has it

been costed in the base route study? Why would eastbound quarry trucks etc choose to climb Lett River Hill rather

than connect to the new highway through the valley floor or continue to use Victoria Pass?

2 Individual Newnes report section 20 re traffic volumes - Was any consideration given to a light vehicle connection from

Lithgow to the Newnes Corridor by means of State Mine Gully Road?

 

3 Hartley Highway Action Group

What are the greenhouse implications for each corridor? If you don't know, do you intend to ignore the greenhouse

implications of one corridor over another?

 

3 Hartley Highway Action Group Is the Newnes corridor the best option from a greenhouse gas emissions perspective? Has this been confirmed?

 

3 Hartley Highway Action Group

Will the four RTA corridors be costed prior to deciding if Newnes corridor goes ahead? If not, how can fair

comparison be made with Newnes corridor if RTA corridors are being calculated differently?

3 Hartley Highway Action Group

 

Concern that a deliberate ploy to fabricate cost for Newnes route so high that it will be excluded from further

consideration. Is this true?

3 Hartley Highway Action Group Request for RTA's costing exercise to confirm figures are correct re Newnes corridor.

3 Hartley Highway Action Group Why is re-sheeting of Forty Bends being included in costings for the Newnes Plateau option?

3 Hartley Highway Action Group

Cost of the Newnes corridor is incorrect. RTA has stated that 18km of new road through valley will cost $13m/km

while 32km along Newnes corridor will cost $17m/km which is why Newnes corridor is double the cost of a valley

route.

3 Hartley Highway Action Group

Cost of Newnes corridor is intentionally high to keep traffic away from Bells Line of Road. How does this align with

Debus's promise to bypass Mount Victoria?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group Has RTA taken into consideration impact on businesses and farming businesses along the "old highway"?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group Hartley corridors do not address problem of black ice at Forty Bends, has this been considered?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

In Orange corridor how will "The Pinch" between the Harp of Erin to Ambermere, at Little Hartley be made to

comply with RTA's three- to four-lane requirement?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group The soil in parts of "The Grange" at Little Hartley is very wet. Has this been taken into account?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

How will severe frost and black ice be mitigated in the green and purple corridors? These conditions are present 30-

50 days per year as opposed to snow in the Newnes area which is present 0-4 days per year.

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Green and purple corridors run over top of myriad of old coal and shale oil workings raising heritage, construction

and cost issues.

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group If green or purple corridor goes ahead, how will it be linked to Jenolan Caves Road?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Has RTA taken into account engineering difficulties and cost in constructing green corridor in swamp areas found

east of Hartley Vale village and adjacent to Pitts Lane?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group Can green and purple corridors meet six per cent grade in line with RTA's stated specification?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Proposed purple corridor has areas of swamp that will pose severe engineering difficulties in "Sassafras Swamp",

"The Willows", "Velacot Park" and "Salvador". How will this be dealt with in costings?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group How will heavy fog be mitigated?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Has quantity of fill required to attain required grade been taken into consideration given the nature of the terrain in

this corridor? From where will fill be obtained? Has this been factored into costings?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group Is the Newnes corridor the best option from a safety perpective, given lack of fog and black ice?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Hyde Park on the River Lett is a wildlife reserve and rich in indigenous heritage. What proposals are in place to

protect that?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Hanging swamps over side of Darling Causeway escarpment not correctly categorised on maps - shown as

"forest". Topographic maps clearly show them as hanging swamps.

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group Is the Newnes corridor the best option for minimising destruction to hanging swamps and escarpment biodiversity?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Does RTA accept Cardno's claims that a Newnes option would have less environmental, social and economic

impact?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

We congratulate Debus/RTA for their visionary selection of the green and purple corridors as the first western

stage of the Bells Line Motorway from Lithgow to Bell.

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Green and purple corridors run over top of myriad of old coal and shale oil workings raising heritage, construction,

cost and safety issues.

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

How will Blackman-Merrick Cemetery and remnants of Rosedale House be protected if green or purple corridors

chosen?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group How will indigenous artefacts be protected if green corridor is chosen?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group Purple corridor goes right over original 1823 Bells Line of Road. Has RTA taken this into account?

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Red corridor option contradicts earlier SKM study on Little Hartley which recommended that valley should not be

dissected.

3 Hartley Highway Action

Group

RTA has given little time to community to digest 200-page report. Will RTA provide impartial expert to assist

community analyse report and communicate any misgivings to RTA in a fair amount of time before any decisions

are made?

 
 

Submission

number Individual / organisation Summary of comment

14 Individual Need to resolve dangerous Clarence Cuttings and Scenic Hill.

14 Individual Forty Bends dangerous in winter and defaces visual amenity of area.

14 Individual Hartley Valley is interface of eastern/western flora and fauna, with moist and dry weather.

14 Individual Study area too confined and doesn't resolve problems of a regional, state and national nature.

14 Individual A more strategic and long-term approach is required to address the east/west transport issues by acquiring a

suitable corridor that can accommodate later evolutions of a route over the mountains.

14 Individual "Big picture" approach essential to identify solution that can unfold into more diverse and long-term transport

solutions.

14 Individual Government must reserve suitable tract of land to accommodate long term transport needs. Present upgrade could

occupy part of this.

14 Individual Hartley Valley is steeped in history, both non-Aboriginal and Aboriginal. Should be protected for future generations.

14 Individual Running B-doubles over 180-year-old convict bridge unacceptable.

14 Individual Highway upgrade should be sensitive to the area and not just confined to Hartley Valley area.

14 Individual Great Western Highway through Lithgow is incompatible with increasing development on both sides of highway

alignment.

14 Individual Need to resolve use of Mort and Main streets, Lithgow as through highways.

14 Individual Need to address expediting heavy freight transport around the area.

15 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness Newnes option should be rejected on economic grounds alone.

15 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness Let's not waste money on bad road options, and delude ourselves about saving environment and community.

15 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes option cuts Gardens of Stone reserve proposal in two and puts nationally endangered swamps at risk, as

well as endangered plants and animals.

15 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness Newnes Plateau is a natural wonderland. Newnes option would see it cut in two.

15 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness RTA has published information in the community update that is biased against Newnes Plateau.

15 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Community update should have shown known and mapped nationally endangered ecological communities on the

Newnes Plateau, not just those in Hartley Valley

16 Individual Orange route will not solve current problem of steep descent/ascent into and out of the Hartley Valley. It should be

eliminated from further consideration.

16 Individual Purple route has similar problems of steep descent/ascent. Cuts through large kangaroo population. A kangaroo

proof fence would be essential to minimise collisions.

16 Individual Newnes corridor may have same kangaroo issue as purple corridor, as it seems to track through uncleared forest

country.

16 Individual Red route has similar problems of steep descent/ascent. It cuts through many small acreage properties leading to

property acquisitions and/or destruction or rural lifestyle properties. Should be eliminated.

16 Individual Newnes corridor solves the steep descent/ascent and is best option in terms of dislocating established commercial

agricultural properties and rural lifestyle properties.

16 Individual Newnes corridor is best option for heavy vehicles and allows for future connection with a Bells Line Freeway.

17 Individual Newnes Plateau is the preferred route. Dual carriageways in both directions should be minimum requirement for

any future development.

18 Individual Newnes option - Need to consider the economic impacts of completely bypassing Lithgow.

18 Individual Newnes option - Need to consider the safety issue of not having medium strip or divided road for most of the length

of the new road.

18 Individual

The environmental data of the Newnes corridor is incomplete and cannot be used as basis for decision to build

highway. More information needs to be collected from experts such as botanists who have studied the vegetation

of the area in detail.

18 Individual

Would be satisfied if a more thorough study of the Newnes Plateau is undertaken, similar to Hartley study area.

The Newnes corridor appears to be "half-baked" and in need of more up to date research to be the foundation of

proper/honest judgement.

18 Individual Newnes option - Need to consider the adverse social affects on residents along Chifley Road caused by threefold

increase in traffic, including heavy vehicles.

19 Individual Newnes corridor appears to be the only one that will receive funding. Should be developed correctly the first time

to avoid increased costs per annum in the future.

19 Individual Bob Debus has stated red corridor would not be funded.

19 Individual Bob Debus has stated orange corridor would not be funded.

19 Individual Not feasible to have green and purple corridors running through Hartley.

20 Individual Newnes corridor - very expensive option.

20 Individual Newnes corridor - Lithgow businesses may suffer due to bypass.

20 Individual Incline on green and red corridors would probably be less than six per cent.

20 Individual Why not tunnel from Soldiers Pinch to Hartley and straighten River Lett.

20 Individual Newnes corridor - Coal leases could cause subsidence; unexploded ordnance.

20 Individual Orange corridor - Road would be hazardous to schoolchildren.

20 Individual Hanging swamps on Darling Causeway.

20 Individual Orange corridor - Imperial Hotel, post office, toll gate cottage and Anglican church all affected by this option.

20 Individual

Green corridor - houses along Darling Causeway did not show up on SKM/Cardno residential indication panels.

124-128, 130-148 Darling Causeway, one house halfway towards Bell, one house at intersection of Darling

Causeway and Bells Line of Road to be included in constraints.

20 Individual Many residents from Marrangaroo to Mount Victoria upset by process which seems to be driven by towns out west

wanting trucks on the road.

20 Individual Upgrading or widening existing highway through Mount Victoria would destroy the town.

20 Individual Red corridor - Views destroyed from Mount York.

20 Individual Purple corridor would destroy Hartley Vale. Compulsory acquisition process is worrying to many residents.

20 Individual Green corridor - Valley views destroyed. Bushwalks affected by views/noise.

21 Individual Orange and red corridors - Destroys Mount Victoria. Against Government policy and Council planning. I object

strongly.

21 Individual What is RTA's agenda of threatening the residents of Mount Victoria with the orange and red proposals?

22 Individual Green corridor - Why not to the north of railway line at Soldiers Pinch and join Darling Causeway at first bend?

22 Individual Green corridor - Wildlife corridor.

22 Individual Purple corridor - Would destroy gorge descending into Hartley Valley.

Submission

number Individual / organisation Summary of comment

22 Individual Newnes corridor - Seems to be best option from a long-term perspective - least wear and tear on vehicles. least

gear changes/braking, least noise pollution.

22 Individual Newnes corridor is possible option for further investigation provided it bypasses Mount Victoria.

22 Individual Orange corridor - Initial proposal was to bypass Mount Victoria. What happened? This would destroy the

peace/quiet of Mount Victoria. Sad legacy to leave children.

22 Individual Red corridor - Doesn't bypass, it cuts Mount Victoria in two.

22 Individual Purple corridor - Creates another eyesore in valley. Will destroy the "little Eden" created by Hartley residents.

Valley is used regularly by film makers because it isn't developed.

22 Individual Red corridor - Will divide the town. Highways or people, not both.

23 Individual

If Newnes Plateau option adopted, a considerable amount of Lithgow-Sydney traffic might access new highway by

means of State Mine Gully Road. If this occurred, further reduction in traffic volumes at Victoria Pass, River Lett Hill

and Scenic Hill. Is it possible for Cardno to look at impact of State Mine Gully Road connection?

24 Individual

Only real option (dismissed by RTA) is to tunnel from Browntown Oval into valley below Berghoffers Pass. Would

be less than 3km, grade of 3% and save 150m ascent - which is required on all proposals to climb over ridge

before descending again. Would resolve Victoria Pass problems - gradient and inclement weather - and have least

impact on residents in valley and surrounding ridges.

24 Individual Zig Zag Railway would be affected by proposed Newnes route. Zig Zag planning to extend operations over former

Dargan deviation into Newnes Junction station. See www.nswrail.net/library/lithgow-zigzag.php.

24 Individual

Why not consider building road on eastern/northern side of railway all the way from Mount Victoria to past Newnes

Junction? Several benefits would include: topography similar to Darling Causeway/Chifley Rd; construction can be

achieved with little impact on locals/traffic; no need to cross railway; impact on properties restricted to 15

properties; local roads saved as safe access for residents/visitors; impact on adjoining national park limited to road

footprint along edge of park; minimal visual/noise impact; cost of relocating electrical and other infrastructure

greatly reduced; transport corridor totally devoid of adjoining residents could be established.

24 Individual Already cleared and/or totally altered land should be used wherever possible so has least impact on environment.

24 Individual

Dargan cuttings converted into roadway and well preserved by bitumen cover that effectively conserves handhewn

rockworks and water culverts featuring beautiful sandstone works typical of railway craftsmen. Cuttings are

of historical significance.

24 Individual

Vegetation in Newnes Plateau is significant for its diversity. Landscape is in very undisturbed state. Areas that were

logged were done selectively and regrowing extremely well. Tracks used for forestry and infrastructure involve

offroad vehicles/trailbikes causing little damage to bushland. See http://asgap.org.au/APOL18/jun00-6.html.

24 Individual Wollangambe, Medlow Bath and Newnes Plateau soil types are highly erodible compared to Lambie group of

mudstones and granites with small areas of alluvial swamp washed down from the surrounding plateau.

24 Individual Newnes Plateau contains numerous rare and endangered species of fauna. Ecosystem would be severely

degraded by fragmentation caused by major road.

24 Individual

Dharug and Gundungurra people had major walking tracks along ridgetop in Newnes Plateau. Rocky outcrops/rock

overhangs bear testament to their usage and the more fertile areas will show abundance of campsites if properly

investigated. Many sites know throughout rockclimbing/bushwalking fraternities yet not recorded by National Parks

and Wildlife Service.

24 Individual

Bells Line of Road not discovered by Europeans, but shown to them by Aboriginal people in 1823. Route surveyed

by Robert Hoddle descending into Hartley Vale. Cox/Mitchell considered it alternate route, but soon dismissed due

to rugged terrain. Further tracks became known as Bells Line of Road extending across Plateau along Beecroft

Track and Maddocks Lane.

24 Individual Dargan named after Thomas Dargan who built cattle yards at each swamp along route. Remnants of these yards

yet to be discovered, but no doubt exist in peaty soils of the swamps.

24 Individual Some of the more accessible gullies in Newnes Plateau were logged as were surrounding stands of Blue

Mountains Ash - mainly for rail sleepers and mine props.

24 Individual None of the five corridors result in meeting Bob Debus's pre-election promise of bypassing Mount Victoria.

24 Individual

Given the amount of money spent investigating feasibility of Newnes Plateau route (since 1827) - all of which have

proved the unfeasibility of a route, the highway could have been upgraded already. When will politicians stop

buying votes with continuing studies then ignoring recommendations?

24 Individual Dubious about sincerity of community consultation, eg change of speed zones on Bells Line of Road did not seem

to involve community consultation despite reports to the contrary.

24 Individual

Proposed roadworks between Mount Victoria and Bell will mean closure of Darling Causeway. What about the

inconvenience this will cause to residents of Bell, Dargan, Mount Wilson and Mount Irvine who will have to travel

via Lithgow to get to local shops, adding extra 68km to each trip? Also the inconvenience to trucks having to travel

to Clarence colliery and sandmine.

25 Individual

Purple, green, blue corridors - All deviate from existing Great Western Highway just before crossing of railway line

on eastern side of Mount Victoria. Deviation then swings between Mount Victoria cemetery and railway for approx

2km to a point past railway marshalling yards where it would cross the lines by bridge, flyover or underneath the

lines to join Darling Causeway. There appear to be no major problems up to this point.

25 Individual

Green corridor - documentation is vague. No certainty it won't seriously impact on historic Shale oil work sites. It

has serious impact on Lawson Long Alley crossing. Corridor has not been checked for Aboriginal heritage and will

have destructive impact on flora, fauna and grazing land holdings. Once it crosses Hartley Valley Road it comes

into shadow of Hassans Walls with potential for snow/ice impact as experienced in Forty Bends area.

25 Individual

Red corridor - Fails on nearly every point of consideration. Corridor would destroy last of the small historic villages

remaining in the Blue Mountains, and impact on historic Berghofers Pass and convict stockade sites. Issues still

need to be resolved at Forty Bends, and area in between will suffer from impact to residential/rural properties,

water courses, Aboriginal heritage sites and ecological communities.

25 Individual

Purple corridor - Report doesn't clearly indicate an accurate enough location. Historical Society opposed to purple

corridor in its present badly defined format. If it goes into foothills on the north will impact on flora/fauna and will

increase potential for ice/snow impacts.

25 Individual

Newnes Plateau under consideration can hardly justify the "pristine wilderness" description given to it by some

opponents. However, there are some historic sites, walking trails, fire trails, forestry roads and properties that will

need consideration when a more detailed corridor plan is developed.

25 Individual Newnes corridor - Appears to have no fatal flaws.

25 Individual As guardians of past history we need to ensure the footprint left on this district by Aboriginal populations and early

convict settlers is disturbed in least manner possible.

25 Individual

Purple corridor - Report doesn't clearly indicate an accurate enough location. Historical Society opposed to purple

corridor in its present badly defined format. It appears to impact heavily on known early settlement sites. Appears

to have been no inspection for Aboriginal occupation as mentioned by explorer Blaxla

25 Individual

Green corridor - documentation is vague. No certainty it won't seriously impact on historic Shale oil work sites. It

has serious impact on Lawson Long Alley crossing. Corridor has not been checked for Aboriginal heritage and will

have destructive impact on flora, fauna and grazing land holdings. Once it crosses Hartley Valley Road it comes

into shadow of Hassans Walls with potential for snow/ice impact as experienced in Forty Bends area.

25 Individual

Newnes corridor - First sections of this corridor started as direct result of steep descent problems from Mount York

down Coxs Rd. An offer of free land grant was made to any one finding a better route. Explorer Hamilton Hume

found a passage across the ridge and called it Darling Causeway to a point where it met Bells Line.

25 Individual

First part of Newnes Plateau has a long transport access history. Road down to Lithgow preceded extension of

railway from Mount Victoria. Hardwood forest area provided timber for mining purposes. Pine plantations later

developed. Timber mills and haulage roads appeared. In 1906 work commenced on railway from Newnes Junction

across Newnes Plateau to shale oil works in Newnes Valley. Rail service transporting oil products continued until

1923. Rail motor service from Lithgow to Newnes continued until 1926. After Glen Davis shale oil industry

commenced, a 50cm pipeline laid into Newnes Valley and across Newnes Plateau on old railway line to pump

product to Newnes Junction. Pipes were recovered in mid- 50s. A prison farm (now abandoned) was developed on

Newnes Plateau.

25 Individual RTA project team must consider all landowners and farmers who have special affinity with the long-term welfare of

their land.

25 Individual

Purple corridor - Report doesn't clearly indicate an accurate enough location. Historical Society opposed to purple

corridor in its present badly defined format. It appears to impact heavily on known early settlement sites. If it goes

south, it will destroy tracts of grazing land that attracted original explorers/settlers, with serious impact on viability

of graziers land holdings.

25 Individual

Red corridor - Fails on nearly every point of consideration. Corridor would destroy last of the small historic villages

remaining in the Blue Mountains. Would impact historic Berghofers Pass and convict stockade sites. Issues still

need to be resolved at Forty Bends. Area in between will suffer from impact to residential/rural properties, water

courses, Aboriginal heritage sites, ecological communities.

26 Individual Newnes corridor - Strong objection to this corridor from an environmental perspective and the environmental risks

associated with any highway expansions across Darling Causeway.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - Assessment report is inadequate and misleading. I have considerable experience of Newnes

Plateau area and have done threatened species survey work and PhD fieldwork research across the plateau for

many years. Currently completing PhD studying endangered Giant Dragonfly in upland swamps of Greater Blue

Mountains including Newnes Plateau.

26 Individual Newnes corridor - NSW Wildlife Atlas threatened fauna records (p46) are not up to date.

26 Individual Newnes corridor - Small areas of swamp endangered ecological communities and documented threatened flora

records are not shown on map on p46.

26 Individual Newnes corridor - The 100m buffer suggested on p44 as adequate to capture occurrences of threatened species

around recorded localities is inadequate and not scientifically justifiable.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - failure to identify (on p47) recorded localities of the Endangered (Threatened Species

Conservation Act (TSC Act)) plant Persoonia hindii in or near the proposed corridor was a substantial oversight.

Previous NSW Wildlife Atlas records for the species go back a number of years. This Newnes Plateau narrow

range endemic species occurs as scattered localised populations across the corridor area, with a number of

recently discovered small populations in the upper Farmers Creek and Marrangaroo Creek areas added to the

NSW Wildlife Atlas.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - List of identified endangered ecological communities on p47 is incomplete. The Environment

Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC Act) Temperate Highlands Peatswamps on Sandstone

(THPS) EEC was not mentioned, although it includes Newnes Plateau Shrub Swamps (NPSS), Coxs River

Swamps and Blue Mountains Swamps, all of which occur within or adjacent to the corridor option. The Darling

Causeway has a number of Blue Mountains Swamps immediately adjacent to it (and Coxs River Swamps below),

which have not all been comprehensively identified on the mapping in the report. Blue Mountains Swamps are

listed as a Vulnerable Ecological Community (VEC) in NSW (TSC) and surely should have been at least mentioned

as such.

26 Individual

There is a problem with nomenclature in terms of ecological communities and the scale and objective of individual

classification schemes that have been used in the past. Coxs River Swamps are clearly identified as a component

of the Montane Peatlands and Swamps EEC in NSW (TSC), and although not specifically mentioned in the poorly

defined EPBC THPS EEC, they will fit the description for this EEC. Likewise, it is important that Blue Mountains

Swamps (BMS) (in the narrow TSC Act VEC sense and the sense used by Blue Mountains City Council (BMCC)

are mentioned as a unique swamp community. Under the EPBC Act, THPS includes NPSS and BMS (as per TSC

and BMCC definitions) as components of Blue Mountains Swamps (in the broader THPS sense). Confusing, yes!

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - Various additional flora records of threatened and ROTAP species have been identified in recent

times throughout the proposed Newnes Plateau corridor and any further route assessment must utilise the latest

NSW Wildlife Atlas and Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney Herbarium records (PlantNET).

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - New population of the Endangered (EPBC and TSC) Blue Mountains Water Skink (Eulamprus

leuraensis) has recently been recorded for a valley swamp in upper Farmers Creek, with the record submitted to

the Wildlife Atlas. This is a first record for the Farmers Creek catchment and the most southerly known location for

the species in the Newnes Plateau area. This is nominally within the corridor route and all of the Farmers Creek

valley floor swamp thus provides potential habitat for this species.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - The threatened flora and fauna map does not appear to show localities for two swamp

populations of the endangered (TSC) Giant Dragonfly (Petalura gigantea) which were recorded last summer

adjacent to the Darling Causeway. Records were promptly submitted to the NSW Wildlife Atlas. Both of these

swamps and their dragonfly populations would be highly impacted by any alteration to surface flow hydrology from

increased hard surfaces and flow concentrations into drainage lines associated with their swamp habitats. One site

in a swamp next to the Hartley Valley Road is also clearly at risk from any highway route into the Hartley Valley

from the Darling Causeway that nominally follows the existing Hartley Valley Road.

26 Individual Newnes corridor - Additional NPSS in upper Farmers Creek and Marrangaroo Creek valleys, and swamps closer to

Clarence (eg Browns Swamp) also provide potential habitat for both P. gigantea and E. leuraensis.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - RTA highway works inevitably result in significant changes to catchment hydrology. Increased

peak flows and stream incision/erosion/sedimentation can be expected to occur wherever highway stormwater is

channelled into watercourses or swamps. Channelisation within swamps inevitably impacts groundwater hydrology

and the persistence of groundwater dependent species such as the Giant Dragonfly and the Blue Mountains Water

Skink. Sedimentation during construction similarly threatens downstream aquatic ecosystems, including swamps,

and is a particular threat to persistence of Petalura at such swamp sites.

Appendix

5

Mo

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - The TSC vulnerable listed plant Boronia deanei has recently been recorded from swamps of

upper Farmers Creek, with records submitted to the NSW Wildlife Atlas. This species is distributed along the valley

floor swamps upstream from the dam.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - Newnes Plateau is recognised for its floristic diversity, with a high proportion of threatened,

locally endemic and rare species. There are a high proportion of narrow-range endemic plants found on the

plateau and with populations in the corridor route. Various species are at their limit of their distribution in the area. It

is important any corridor assessment recognises these biodiversity attributes in a landscape context. Narrow

consideration of strictly listed threatened species alone does not provide a meaningful assessment of the full

environmental impacts of this route.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - Additional highly restricted plants include Banksia penicellata (ROTAP 3RC), which has recently

been recorded from spurs and slopes within the upper Marangaroo Creek area, with records submitted to the NSW

Wildlife Atlas. This significant population probably represents the most southerly population of the species, and is

thus important from a biogeographic perspective.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - Persoonia recedens (ROTAP 2R), which is restricted to the Newnes Plateau and near

Blackheath, is scattered across the corridor route and could be highly impacted by the proposed corridor due to its

habitat preferences.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - Leptospermum blakelyi (ROTAP 2R), a local endemic, is known from only two sites on heath

and rocky plateau above Hassans Walls and on the Newnes Plateau in the upper Farmers Creek and Marrangaroo

Creek areas, within the corridor route.

26 Individual Newnes corridor - Old Canyon Colliery site on the eastern side of the Darling Causeway is now part of the Blue

Mountains National Park, contrary to the land tenure mapping on p45.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - The route dissects the proposed Gardens of Stone Stage 2 proposal for addition to the

conservation estate. In addition to its biodiversity values, this area has outstanding landscape values, with pagoda

formations of national/international value. The benefits of preserving this landscape as intact as possible for future

generations cannot be over-emphasised. The future economic value to the local and regional community from

ecotourism to this area should be an important consideration.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - The report has failed to mention the impact of a highway corridor upon the movement of fauna

on the Newnes Plateau or the impact upon what is a biodiversity asset of great significance, contiguous with

Wollemi and Blue Mountains national parks and the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - In the Conclusion (Part 5), s.21.1, the report summary of the route is superficial and inaccurate

in terms of impacts upon the Newnes Plateau. It is unfortunate the consultants used what is a flawed Department

of Environment and Climate Change (DECC) vegetation mapping/condition assessment document, which suggests

that the Newnes Plateau vegetation is generally degraded. While there are clearly localised areas of highly

degraded vegetation associated with mining and quarry sites, and inappropriate trail bike and 4WD tracks across

the plateau, the bulk of the vegetation is good to high quality and of extremely high conservation value.

26 Individual

Newnes corridor - the report (p198) concludes by stating that the Newnes corridor "provides…environmental

advantages" over other options. This statement is misleading and indicates the desktop research underpinning the

report is inadequate. Extensive "ground-truthing" and fieldwork surveys will be necessary to meaningfully assess

the impacts of a highway route across the Newnes Plateau.

27 Individual

Extremely disappointed to hear about the highway upgrade through the centre of Hartley Valley which is one of the

prettiest valleys in NSW. It would be a tragedy if the natural beauty/peacefulness of the valley was disturbed when

there are more practical routes for the proposed highway.

28 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because it's cheaper than $900m option over Newnes.

28 Individual The five corridor options could see new route for Great Western Highway carved through Blue Mountains World

Heritage Area. They all have risky economic, environmental and social impacts and should be rejected

28 Individual Tunnel option means that the adverse impacts on tourism and recreational opportunity of the other options would

be avoided.

28 Individual I support tunnel under Mount Victoria village and western escarpment that would emerge at foot of the Blue

Mountains on the existing highway.

28 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because it ensures Gardens of Stone reserve proposal is not bisected by

sandstone cuttings up to 65m deep.

28 Individual

Tunnel option is less damaging because: the montane heathlands, nationally endangered upland swamps and

unique snowgum-snowgrass high plateau woodlands of biodiverse gardens on Newnes Plateau with unique

sandstone features are not bulldozed.

28 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage area would be avoided.

28 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because Farmers Creek water storage, Lithgow's water supply, Dargan's and State

Mine creeks and Grose River would not potentially be contaminated with road runoff/road construction sediment.

28 Individual Tunnel option avoids costly, high impact road construction on narrow visually prominent Darling Causeway over

national endangered ecological communities, and threatened and regional significant flora/fauna.

28 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal heritage at Hartley Valley or Newnes

Plateau would be spared.

28 Individual Tunnel option means no vehicle would divert down narrow Bells Line of Road preventing increases in

fatalities/accidents and protecting Bilpin and Kurrajong communitites from increased traffic.

28 Individual Tunnel option would avoid new highway traffic impacts on Bell, Dargan, Newnes Junction, Clarence, Marrangaroo

and Hartley Valley communities.

28 Individual Tunnel option would remove traffic impact on Mount Victoria village.

29 Individual

Newnes corridor - Snow, ice and fog could be an issue for a highway built on the highest sandstone area of the

greater Blue Mountains region. The Newnes Plateau is mostly of elevation 1000-1200m ASL, which is higher than

Mount Victoria. I live at Dargan (elevation 1100m), and we get snow a few times a year, and frosts and ice often.

29 Individual

Newnes corridor - Newnes Plateau is special place with endangered ecological communities of flora/fauna,

particularly in south, eg Farmers Creek (which is also catchment area of Lithgow water supply). These areas

should be conserved for future.

29 Individual Newnes corridor - Many rare or threatened plants/animals occur on Newnes Plateau which are poorly conserved

and which do not exist in neighbouring national parks.

 

29 Individual

Newnes corridor - The corridor would pass through largely undisturbed areas, especially in the creeks and gullies.

Main existing disturbance is from dirt roads and illegal trail bike tracks. The undisturbed bush areas are in a mostly

natural state with very few weeds. The Newnes Plateau is not as degraded as some reports or individuals would

have you believe. Even the National Parks and Wildlife Service got it wrong a couple of years ago, when they

published an assessment report of the Gardens of Stone 2 Proposal which grossly overestimated the amount of

disturbance on the Plateau, based on a dodgy GIS analysis without checking the reality in the field.

29 Individual

Newnes corridor - Native fauna (including threatened species eg Spotted-tailed Quoll)) are more likely to be found

(and hence needing protection) on the Newnes Plateau which consists mainly of intact bushland with no human

residences or domestic animals and livestock. This is in stark contrast to the Hartley Valley which contains much

cleared farmland (with weeds and fences), residences and non-native animals, some of which are feral and a

threat to native species.

29 Individual

Newnes corridor - Southern end of the Newnes Plateau is spectacular area of sandstone pagoda rock formations

and “lost city” landscapes, which would be ruined by a highway transecting it. These areas have a big potential for

ecotourism and should be in a conservation area.

29 Individual

Newnes corridor - The “thorough strategic review” lacks detail regarding environmental constraints. To say the

“best available” data was used is not good enough to base major decisions on. Existing National Parks and Wildlife

Service data does not fully show what is actually out there. Some areas have probably never been properly

mapped in detail, but it does not mean that rare and threatened flora and fauna are not there. For example, not all

the Newnes Plateau shrub swamps (which are an endangered ecological community under the federal EPBC Act)

were shown on the Cardno constraints maps. The same applies to other rare/threatened plants which are known to

occur in the area. Even the threatened flora species list in the report was not complete. e.g. Persoonia hindii (TSC

E classified) missing.

29 Individual

Newnes corridor - The methodology of putting a 100m buffer around known locations of endangered flora and

fauna seems to me too simplistic, as it does not account for locations which are not yet recorded but may exist. I

think that you need to look at the distribution of the broader ecological communities and their links (eg swamps and

watercourses) to determine areas that need protection to preserve their integrity as a whole.

29 Individual Newnes Plateau is worthy of conservation given unique high elevation sandstone plateau environment containing

heaths, shrub swamps and pagoda rock formations which mainly occur in Newnes State Forest.

29 Individual

Newnes corridor - Impact of the highway on the historical route of the Wolgan Valley Railway (c1905), which went

from Newnes Junction to Newnes in the Wolgan Valley. The highway corridor would impact greatly on the Newnes

Junction township area and also along the first couple of kilometres of the old railway alignment, part of which the

Old Bells Line of Road follows. The Zig Zag Railway Reserve and various historical railway deviations of the main

western line are also close to Newnes Junction.

29 Individual

Newnes corridor - Cardno review concluded that the option "provides sufficient social and environmental

advantages to make it worthy of further consideration". I disagree on both counts. There are no social benefits to

residents from Bell to Newnes Junction and at Marrangaroo. A considerable number of residents would be

affected by bigger road and more traffic compared to the number in Hartley Valley.

29 Individual Newnes corridor - Diversion of existing and future traffic would lead to increase in traffic along Bells Line of Road

which is known to be dangerous road with higher than average accident rates.

30 Individual Proposal is a very expensive road construction project and far ahead of its real need to the Australian economy

and in terms of traffic needs.

30 Individual

I have travelled the Great Western Highway to Katoomba and across to Darling Causeway to Bell, Dargan and

Lithgow up the Mudgee Road, then back to Windsor via Bells Line of Road. The roads are satisfactory when

driving to the weather conditions. I have been driving NSW roads for over 40 years

30 Individual Newnes corridor - Widening Darling Causeway should not be considered. Rather, build a two-tiered road piggyback,

each one way.

30 Individual Newnes corridor - This option may completely bypass Lithgow which may have some merit provided drivers are

given attractive options to take breaks from driving.

30 Individual A large bridge would be required to span Farmers Creek water storage (Lithgow's water supply). There is risk of

contamination.

30 Individual

The roads in the Blue Mountains area tend to follow the ridges. High points are environmentally very sensitive

attracting fog, ice and snow blizzards. Such areas should have minimal disturbance to respect World Heritage

Conservation Area.

30 Individual Newnes corridor - Would bisect Gardens of Stone reserve by ugly straight line cuttings up to 65m deep. Ecological

integrity would be damaged.

30 Individual A large bridge would be required to span Farmers Creek water storage (Lithgow's water supply). There is risk of

contamination.

30 Individual If base case corridor via Hartley Vale starts from Darling Causeway it may cause strong objection. I would request

an environmental impact study.

30 Individual Newnes corridor - Communities of Bell, Dargan and Clarence may suffer noise pollution and environmental loss,

eg national endangered ecological communities and loss of flora/fauna.

30 Individual An improved railway line to Lithgow would be better strategy. If 70% of rail freight is bulk wheat and coal then rail

capability should be improved. This area is a B-double "no-go" area.

31 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because it is cheaper than $900m option over Newnes.

31 Individual

I object strongly to all five corridors. These proposals would result in new route for Great Western Highway carved

through Blue Mountains World Heritage Area and over escarpment north-west of Mount Victoria. All corridors have

risky economic, environmental and social impacts.

31 Individual Tunnel option means adverse impacts on tourism and recreational opportunity of the other options are prevented.

31 Individual I support tunnel under Mount Victoria village and western escarpment that would emerge at foot of the Blue

Mountains on the existing highway - a revised option being requested by the Colong Foundation for Wilderness.

31 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because it ensures Gardens of Stone reserve proposal is not bisected by

sandstone cuttings up to 65 metres deep.

31 Individual

Tunnel option is less damaging because: the montane heathlands, nationally endangered upland swamps and

unique snowgum-snowgrass high plateau woodlands of biodiverse gardens on Newnes Plateau with unique

sandstone features are not bulldozed.

31 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage area would be avoided.

31 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because Farmers Creek water storage, Lithgow's water supply, Dargan's and State

Mine Creeks and Grose River would not potentially be contaminated with road runoff/road construction sediment.

31 Individual Tunnel option avoids costly, high impact road construction on narrow visually prominent Darling Causeway over

national endangered ecological communities, and threatened and regionally significant flora/fauna.

31 Individual Tunnel option means major impacts on wildlife corridors of Hartley Valley/Newnes Plateau caused by all other road

options are avoided.

31 Individual Tunnel option is less damaging because Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal heritage at Hartley Valley or Newnes

Plateau would be spared.

31 Individual Tunnel option means no vehicle would divert down narrow Bells Line of Road preventing increases in

fatalities/accidents, and protecting Bilpin and Kurrajong communitites from increased traffic.

31 Individual Tunnel option would avoid new highway traffic impacts on Bell, Dargan, Newnes Junction, Clarence, Marrangaroo

and Hartley Valley communities.

31 Individual Tunnel option would remove traffic impact on Mount Victoria village.

32 Heritage Council of NSW

SKM's identification of non-Aboriginal heritage items has been through desktop research with limited field

checking. The absence of comprehensive fieldwork means table 4.6 is currently of limited use, but does indicate

large number of heritage items which would need detailed consideration as future options are further refined. Use

of "relic" column in table 4.6 is generally unhelpful.

32 Heritage Council of NSW

SKM report - Discussion of legislation in relation to heritage is generally inadequate. Appears to be some

misunderstanding of various categories of listings whether state, commonwealth or locat government (statutory)

and non-statutory (such as National Trust).

32 Heritage Council of NSW

SKM report - more work on non-Aboriginal heritage identification and assessment is required in accordance with

NSW Heritage Council and Heritage Branch from Department of Planning methodology and guidelines for this

aspect of Great Western Highway corridors.

32 Heritage Council of NSW

Heritage Council has noted that SKM report has recommended ground-truthing of European heritage constraints

identified in and adjacent to corridors. This will include site inspections, preliminary statements of significance and

identification of site curtilages for all heritage/archaeological items. Heritage Council advises that next stage of

project should also include impact assessment for identified items within corridors and consideration of

mitigation/management measures.

33 Individual Newnes corridor - Don't see how a proposal can be justified that will cost double that of the other corridors. Money

should be spent on duplicating rail line for future transport needs.

33 Individual I urge the RTA to lobby Federal Government to spend money on rail and leave road as is with minor upgrades as

needed.

33 Individual

Newnes corridor - P97 of Cardno report indicates the corridor less likely to be impacted by snow/ice. I don't know

how this conclusion reached. Snow, ice and fog would definitely be issues for highway on Newnes Plateau

(elevation 1000-12000m), which is higher than Mount Victoria. As Dargan residents we get snow a few times a

year and ice/frost often.

33 Individual

Newnes corridor - Extensive detailed "on ground" flora/fauna studies need to be carried out to determine impacts

of a highway cutting across the Newnes Plateau. It is crucial to protect biodiversity of this area, especially Upper

Farmers Creek. A three-lane highway would destroy unique environment of Newnes Plateau, and impact on World

Heritage Area along Darling Causeway. Native vegetation would be cleared and destroyed during construction.

33 Individual Newnes Plateau is unique with national endangered ecological communities such as Newnes Plateau Shrub

Swamp. These areas should be conserved for future rather than being dissected.

33 Individual Newnes Plateau - Many rare and endangered plants and animals which are poorly conserved and do not exist in

neighbouring national parks.

33 Individual

Newnes corridor would pass through largely undisturbed areas especially in creeks and gullies. Main existing

disturbance is from dirt roads and illegal trail bike tracks. Undisturbed bush areas are in mostly natural state with

very few weeds.

33 Individual Newnes Plateau - Southern end is spectacular sandstone pagoda rock formation which would be ruined by

highway cutting across it.

33 Individual Newnes corridor - there would be major impacts on wildlife corridors both on Newnes Plateau and along Darling

Causeway.

33 Individual Newnes corridor - This area is part of Gardens of Stone Stage 2 Proposal which is trying to reserve Newnes

Plateau to allow for better management in future so as to protect important natural values.

33 Individual Newnes corridor - Would impact on historical route of Wolgan Valley Railway. Also Zig Zag Railway reserve and

various historical railway deviations of the main western line are close to Newnes Junction near proposed corridor.

33 Individual

Newnes report - I urge the RTA to carry out extensive further studies particularly in Upper Farmers Creek to

establish facts. If more time needed to carry out studies, then announcement should be pushed back. After this has

been completed I am confident RTA will rule out Newnes Plateau as an option.

33 Individual Newnes corridor - Report is both incomplete and misleading.

33 Individual Newnes corridor - No social benefits in allowing B-doubles to pass over Blue Mountains. These people have not

been part of the consultation process.

33 Individual

Newnes corridor - I have walked extensively on Newnes Plateau for 20 years. It appears Cardno is not familiar with

the plateau and has relied on desktop analysis and grabbing most up to date information from different sources.

GIS tools are useless without background knowledge in mapping. On ground field work is also essential.

33 Individual Newnes corridor - I can see no social benefits for residents of Bell to Newnes Junction and at Marrangaroo. As well

as encroaching on their properties there would be increased traffic including B-doubles.

33 Individual Newnes corridor - Diversion of existing and future traffic would lead to increase in traffic along Bells Line of Road

which is known to be dangerous road with higher than average accident rates.

34 Individual Resources organisations in the Newnes area will be benefactors of any highway upgrade. They should contribute

to cost of upgrade

34 Individual Cost of upgrading highway will destroy existing water drainage.

34 Individual Kangaroos take refuge on steep mountains above McKanes Falls Road.

34 Individual Highway upgrade in any of the four corridors through Hartley would attract all the long distance heavy vehicle

traffic through Lithgow.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Cost – A tunnel option would cost less than the $900m (at least!) Newnes Plateau option and less than the longer

Hartley Vale options.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Tunnel option - There would be no adverse impacts on tourism and recreational opportunities associated with all

the new corridors.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

A tunnel under Mount Victoria village through the escarpment and onto the existing highway easement provides

least damaging environmental, social and heritage outcomes, has economic advantages and is technically

feasible.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Huge cost “blow outs”, reflecting the very difficult terrain traversed, are faced by all options, but a tunnel scheme

maximises the use of existing highway in Hartley Valley and from South Bowenfels (‘Lithgow South’) to

Marrangaroo.

number Individual / organisation Summary of comment

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Tunnel option - Farmers Creek water storage, Lithgow’s water supply, would not be jeopardised by the Newnes

option during construction and subsequently by contaminated road runoff and sediment.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

The corridors could adversely affect Blue Mountains World Heritage Area and futher damage western escarpment

northwest of Mount Victoria.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Tunnel option means “Gardens of Stone” reserve proposal would not be transected by ugly sandstone cuttings up

to 65m deep and ugly long ramps onto the Newnes Plateau.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society Tunnel option - Newnes Plateau native vegetation would not be bulldozed and cleared during construction.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Tunnel option - Nationally endangered ecological communities, and threatened and regionally significant flora and

fauna of the western escarpment would be safe.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Tunnel option - Major impacts on wildlife corridors from all the new options would be avoided. Impact on

conservation areas, including the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, would be avoided.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society Tunnel option - Would not affect the Berambing-Kurrajong Heights communites, who have not been consulted.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Tunnel option - There would be no adverse impacts on tourism and recreational opportunities associated with all

the new corridors.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Tunnel option - No new impacts upon the Bell, Dargan, Newnes and Clarence communities from the Newnes

Plateau option or on the Hartley Vale community from the three other corridors.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society Blue Mountains Conservation Society feels upgrade is unjustified and funds should go towards rail improvements.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Tunnel option - Local traffic between Lithgow, the Blue Mountain’s towns and villages, and Oberon-Jenolan would

boost the low traffic volumes expected by this scheme and help justify the major construction.

35 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society

Tunnel option - Vehicles would not divert down the Bells Line of Road, thereby adding to the road toll, for which this

road is reknowned, and affecting the Berambing-Kurrajong Heights communites, who have not been consulted.

36 Individual Support tunnel option - it would cost less than the $900m earmarked for Newnes option and less than the longer

Hartley options.

36 Individual

Huge cost “blow outs”, reflecting the very difficult terrain traversed, are faced by all options, but a tunnel scheme

maximises the use of existing highway in Hartley Valley and from South Bowenfels (‘Lithgow South’) to

Marrangaroo.

36 Individual Support tunnel option - It would preserve Gardens of Stone proposal and not be transected by ugly sandstone

cuttings up to 65m deep and ugly long ramps onto the Newnes Plateau.

36 Individual Tunnel option - Would not affect the Berambing-Kurrajong Heights communites, who have not been consulted.

36 Individual Tunnel option - Local traffic between Lithgow, the Blue Mountain’s towns and villages, and Oberon-Jenolan would

boost the low traffic volumes expected by this scheme and help justify the major construction.

36 Individual Tunnel option - Vehicles would not divert down the Bells Line of Road, thereby adding to the road toll, for which this

road is reknowned

37 Individual Any upgrade that goes through Mount Victoria or Little Hartley will destroy the tourist items that people come to

see. A bypass that is too wide will leave these villages stranded.

37 Individual Narrow space between Imperial Hotel and Old Post Office in Mountt Victoria is competely unworkable for any

upgrade.

37 Individual Purple corridor appears to strike the right balance (based on evidence presented so far).

37 Individual

It is abundantly clear the entire centre of Mount Victoria is a heritage precinct. Mount Victoria and Little Hartley are

just a handful of substantially intact 19th century villages left in this part of Australia. Upgrading highway in its

present alignment in Mount Victoria would be a cultural disaster.

37 Individual Would be terrible to place requirements of a road above centuries of precious and irreplaceable cultural heritage.

37 Individual

Newnes corridor study - Results appear to indicate Newnes route would cost twice as much as any of the other

routes while reducing traffic along existing highway by only half. In other words, this option is four times less

worthwhile from point of view of anyone who is adversely affected by current situation.

37 Individual

Bob Debus has promised Mount Victoria would be bypassed. Also no federal funding will be forthcoming for any

upgrade that doesn't bypass Mount Victoria. Why is the RTA wasting time/money pursuing the two corridors in

question?

37 Individual By making existing Great Western Highway a tourist route will allow Mount Victoria and Little Hartley to capitalise

on their historic features, build on attractive nexus with Jenolan Caves and further boost appea of Hartley Vale.

37 Individual Newnes corridor study - Indicates heavy vehicles would continue to use old route to Lithgow because shorter. This

would defeat purpose of some of the key aims of project.

37 Individual

Heritage precincts of Mount Victoria/Little Hartley would only benefit to moderate degree by a one-third traffic

reduction (if Newnes option went ahead) when compared to two-thirds reduction which would be achieved by

bypass.

38 Individual Tunnel option seems to compare well economically and is technically feasible.

38 Individual Tunnel option least damaging to environment, heritage and values of the village and area.

39 Individual I support tunnel proposal under Mount Victoria utilsing current highway corridor as most effective and least

damaging alternative.

39 Individual Newnes Plateau and Gardens of Stone should be preserved in all their biodiversity in the interests of the planet.

39 Individual New highway should not disrupt any communities - human, animal or plant.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

The $900m cost of a Newnes Plateau option is totally unacceptable to Lithgow Environment Group (LEG), when

the other options are much more cost effective. LEG believes that a tunnel option under Mount Victoria connecting

with the existing corridor would cost less, and have far fewer social or environmental impacts.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

LEG cannot see any positive economic, social or tourism benefits for Lithgow, Hartley, Hampton, Jenolan Caves or

Oberon of a Newnes Plateau Route, which will see all traffic along the Great Western Highway and Bells Line of

Road bypass these areas. LEG believes a Newnes Plateau Route will negatively affect future economic growth,

especially tourism, in the Lithgow, Hartley, Hampton, Jenolan Caves and Oberon areas, upon which the local

economies are heavily reliant.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

Newnes Plateau is largely above 1150 metres in altitude, higher than the existing or proposed corridors. It is also

higher than the usual local fog, snow and ice 'black-spots" at Mount Lambie, Yetholme, Cherry Tree Hill and

Oberon. A Newnes Plateau route is therefore far more likely to experience accidents or delays due to fog, drizzle,

snow and ice - than the other options.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

LEG has been monitoring mine subsidence on Newnes Plateau for many years, and finds it difficult to accept the

cost of construction and maintenance won’t be considerably higher than other corridor options. The Newnes

Plateau route is potentially affected by surface subsidence from the old State Mine, Oakey Park Mine, Cobar Park

Mine and Fernbrook Colliery, as well as more recent mining at Clarence Colliery and Springvale Colliery.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

Newnes Plateau is a priceless tourism asset of magnificent natural, scientific, educational and environmental

value. It is part of the Gardens of Stone National Park proposal Stage 2, and is then eligible for inclusion in the

Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. Any proposal to slice this priceless natural asset in half by a new

highway is totally unacceptable.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

Newnes Plateau is the source of Farmers Creek and Lithgow’s major drinking water supply, and is also part of

Sydney’s drinking water catchment. A new highway not only poses a contamination threat during construction, but

in the event of a major pollution incident (such as the chemical spill at Mount Victoria Pass in 2003). The difficult

terrain and short distance between the proposed highway and Farmers Creek Dam will make it almost impossible

to contain a major chemical fuel spill in a timely manner before it reaches Lithgow’s drinking water supply.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

A Newnes Plateau route will impact on water quality in Marrangaroo Creek, which provides essential habitat for the

last remaining platypus colony in the Coxs River upstream of Lake Lyell. All other waterways upstream of Lake

Lyell are too polluted by STP outfalls and mining and power generation discharges to support platypus. The dam

wall of Lake Lyell is a physical barrier for to movement of platypus from downstream to recolonise areas upstream.

LEG members have been monitoring water quality in Marrangaroo Creek and this platypus colony for three years.

We consider it to be a highly sensitive habitat which could be seriously threatened by any highway across its

headwaters.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

A Newnes Plateau route poses a far greater bushfire threat to the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area

than the other options through disturbed agricultural land. A highway across Newnes Plateau introduces numerous

potential fire sources, which under predominate west to north-west winds will spread deep into inaccessible areas

of the Wollemi National Park where there are no firebreaks and control almost impossible. A Newnes Plateau

route is more likely to be closed by major bushfires than the Hartley corridor options through disturbed agricultural

land. The intensity of bushfires on the heavily wooded Newnes Plateau is also likely to be greater, and therefore

the potential for injury or fatalities involving highway users is likely to be higher during bushfire emergencies.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

Lithgow Environment Group promotes ecological sustainability as the basis for all human activities, actively seeks

improved regulation of human activities which degrade or destroy natural environments, and works towards

repairing the adverse affects of human activities in the past. The group is opposed to any Newnes Plateau option.

40 Lithgow Environment Group

LEG believes a Newnes Plateau Route fails to meet the RTA's main objective, which apparently is to stop

traffic passing through Mount Victoria. If a Newnes Plateau route is constructed, all local traffic from the Lithgow

area heading east will still use the Great Western Highway and/or Browns Gap Road because it will be shorter and

quicker than going to out to Marrangaroo or up Scenic Hill. Similarly all traffic heading east and west from Hartley,

Hampton, Jenolan Caves and Oberon will still use the Great Western Highway and Mount Victoria Pass, not the

Newnes Plateau route.

41 Individual

If upgrade of rail not possible, then next best option is tunnel bypass of Mount Victoria, ie under Mount Victoria,

through the escarpment and onto existing highway easement. This option would be cheaper than Newnes option

and economically competitive with the Hartley Vale alternatives.

41 Individual Newnes corridor option did not include any social or environmental investigation beyond the route being outside

the national park and as such cannot be used as an illustration of a triple bottom line process as claimed.

41 Individual Existing corridor should be upgraded and continue to be used and will be less disruptive in medium/long term to

environment and community than any other options mooted.

41 Individual High volume of heavy traffic over Blue Mountains is unnecessary/unsustainable. An extension of rail corridor to

allow transport by train rather than road will benefit community and environment and worth the investment.

41 Individual

Newnes corridor option indicated 60% of current traffic volumes will continue to use Victoria Pass which will

continue to need upgrading and maintenance despite new road. Newnes would primarily be constructed for benefit

of heavy traffic.

41 Individual I feel that freight should be carried by rail in the interests of safety and eliminating the need for large transections of

bushland for a new corridor. I would like to see further investigation of rail options for freight

42 Individual

Our land has been identified as being in area the RTA has declared location of 16 threatened and endangered

species of animals. These include echidnas, koalas (which have a protection order), kangaroos, eastern brown

snake and red belly black snake.

42 Individual Our land is part of a natural catchment area in which run-off feeds from our property into the property beside us

and behind us and into a creek that runs in a south westerly direction.

42 Individual

Our land is less than half a kilometre from the Hartley historic site that encompasses the courthouse, church and

gaol which are all natural heritage listed. It also has been identified by the RTA as being situated in the area

identified as having a high likelihood of Aboriginal artefacts and significance.

42 Individual

Purchase of our property was done with the confirmed knowledge that the RTA had no intention of using the land

for anything. Within six weeks of receiving the all clear from an RTA search done by our conveyancer prior to our

purchase of the property, the RTA announced their plans for the alternative corridors (the search results can be

produced on demand). I have sought legal advice on this matter and have been advised that we may have a case

against the RTA based on the misleading information provided at the time of the search.

42 Individual Orange corridor does not negate the use of Victoria Pass and River Lett Hill, both of which are reasons for the

highway upgrade.

42 Individual We object to orange corridor which would endanger our property. It would also engulf long-established homes and

properties.

42 Individual

We are young professionals who have made a lifestyle choice to move to Hartley and bring our professional skills

into a marginalised area for specialty services. We have worked hard to purchase our property in Hartley and feel

extremely disappointed that our property could be affected by the highway upgrade. If forced to sell our property

we would not buy in the area again due to the absolute lack of value put on people like us wanting to move into the

community and do some good. We would also tell other couples not to bother relocating to Hartley or Lithgow as

their services are not wanted/appreciated.

43 Individual Newnes corridor - The higher cost of $900 million for of a Newnes Plateau option is totally unnecessary and

unacceptable to me, when other options are cheaper.

43 Individual

I believe a tunnel option under Mount Victoria connecting with the existing corridor would cost less than the $900m

Newnes Plateau option, would have far fewer social or environmental impacts, and should be the RTA's preferred

option.

43 Individual

I cannot possibly see any positive economic, social or tourism benefits for Lithgow, Hartley, Hampton, Jenolan

Caves or Oberon of a Newnes Plateau option which will bypass these areas. It will negatively affect future

economic growth, especially tourism on which these areas are heavily reliant.

43 Individual

Any Newnes Plateau Route will largely be above 1150 metres in altitude - which is much higher than any of the

existing or proposed corridors. It is also higher than the usual fog, snow and ice 'black-spots" of Mount Lambie,

Yetholme, Cherry Tree Hill and Oberon. A Newnes Plateau route is therefore far more likely to be affected by

accidents, delays and highway closures due to fog, drizzle, snow and ice.

43 Individual

Newnes corridor - Introducing massive volumes of traffic into a huge bushland area with no existing permanent

water suplies or fire fighting services poses a severe bushfire threat to road users, Wollemi National Park, and

Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. Once a fire starts in this area there are no significant firebreaks to

control it until the Putty Road.

43 Individual

Newnes corridor - It is common practice in the Lithgow area to cover-up mine subsidence, as many people have

found to their peril. It is definitely a case of buyer and builder beware. I believe a Newnes Plateau option will cost

more to construct and maintain in the long term than the other options, due to ongoing mine subsidence problems

from the old State Mine, Cobar Park Mine, Oakey Park Mine, Fernbrook Colliery, Clarence Colliery and Springvale

Colliery.

43 Individual

Newnes corridor is a threat to endangered fora, fauna and ecosystems and Greater Blue Mountains World

Heritage values. Newnes Plateau is one of Lithgow's greatest tourism assets due to priceless range of flora/fauna

habitats, cultural heritage values and magnificent scenic values. This area is proposed for inclusion in Gardens of

Stone National Park. If this occurs then area may also be added to Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.

43 Individual

Newnes Plateau is the source of Farmers Creek, Lithgow's major drinking water supply. Lithgow Council's water

treatment plant is basic, and does not have the capacity to safely remove many of the pollutants likely to be

introduced by a new highway through the catchment. High quality drinking water is essential for the survival of any

rural town, and Farmers Creek is increasingly important to Lithgow because the other alternative water supply from

Oberon Dam is severely affected by drought and was recently down to 16% capacity. A new highway poses a

significant threat to Lithgow's water supply from sediment, oil and grease during construction. Once the highway is

in place there will be an ever-present risk of a fuel or chemical spill, as occurred at the base of Mount Victoria Pass

in 2003, and the steep terrain and short distance between the proposed route and Farmers Creek Dam will make

any such spill very difficult to contain before it enters Lithgows drinking water supply.

43 Individual

Newnes Plateau is the source of Marrangaroo Creek, which provides critical habitat for the last remaining platypus

colony in the upper Coxs River catchment upstream of Lake Lyell. Any pollution or spill from a Newnes Plateau

option could directly kill these platypus, or severely impair the nacroinvertebrate assemblages upon which they rely

for food. Any threat to this platypus colony is totally unacceptable to me.

43 Individual

It upsets me that the Hartley residents have suddenly discovered they no longer want the Great Western Highway,

despite the fact it has existed in the Hartley Valley for more than 150 years. Their NIMBYISM therefore means that

the villages of Bell, Dargan and Clarence, not to mention Marrangaroo and Tunnel Hill, are going to cop the

adverse impacts. Similarly the residents of Kurrajong, Berambing, Bilpin, and Mount Tomah do not appear to have

been consulted, yet many people regard a Newnes Plateau Route as a precursor to an eventual Bells Line

Expressway. I do hope that the RTA is giving equal weight to the genuine concerns of residents from these villages,

many of whom purchased land in undisturbed bushland areas, and not disturbed agricultural land with a highway

running through it like Hartley, precisely because they were seeking a peaceful bushland ambience unaffected by

highway noise.

43 Individual

My family has owned land in the area for 40 years. On two prior occasions the RTA has compulsorily acquired

portions of our land to widen the Great Western Highway. As a result our land has been reduced in size and the

RTA only paid us a pittance for the acres lost. The RTA took the only area of our land that had a spring to feed a

dam, so consequently we now no longer have enough water. The house my father built well back on the block to

avoid highway noise is now twice as close to the highway, and the traffic noise gets steadily worse every year. I

consider that the RTA has already greatly devalued our property by these two previous widenings of the Western

Highway widening, and that a Newnes Plateau option will destroy our property values altogether.

43 Individual

I believe bypassing all traffic from the Bells Line of Road and Great Western Highway past Lithgow will turn Tunnel

Hill into a "petrol station alley" and fast food chain hub. This is because the petrol stations and likes of Macdonalds,

KFC and Red Rooster who will lose the passing trade in Lithgow will look to relocate - and Tunnel Hill is the most

likely area. This will totally destroy the peaceful bushland rural ambience we have spent 40 years creating. It will

totally ruin our lifestyle, our quality of life, our amenity, our environment, our hopes and our dreams for the future.

43 Individual

Newnes Plateau Route fails to meet the RTA's main objective of reducing traffic on Mount Victoria Pass and

through Mount Victoria township. All local traffic from Lithgow heading east will still use the Great Western Highway

and/or Browns Gap Road because it will be shorter and quicker. All traffic heading east or west from Hartley,

Hampton, Jenolan Caves or Oberon won't use a Newnes Plateau route either.

44 Individual Improving public transport is the answer - money should be spent on better rail services.

44 Individual I support solution to Mount Victoria bypass of buliding a tunnel under Mount Victoria village.

45 Individual The Newnes Plateau has very little restriction upon it in terms of people, flora and fauna, social and economic

issues and community impacts, people, noise issues and agriculture.

46 Individual Red corridor would require considerable amount of construction to bring a road down from Mount Victoria then

adjoining with Coxs Track at foot of Hassans Walls.

46 Individual Purple corridor - Contains workings of shale industry.

46 Individual Newnes corridor appears to have less environmental problems than Hartley Valley area.

46 Individual Any of the four corridors within Hartley Valley would contribute to erosion and pollution in the Waragamba

Catchment, which is one of the contributors to the river system.

46 Individual Hartley Vale is one of the most heritage-rich areas of the whole study area.

46 Individual Purple corridor - Would destroy one of the most historic tourist roads leading into Hartley Vale.

47 Individual Not enough information on costings was provided at the community meetings.

47 Individual In considering each of the corridors, people should be the primary concern, not trees or animals.

47 Individual Newnes corridor my be longer but less people would be affected.

47 Individual Purple corridor - B-doubles turning right into Station St, Mount Victoria, from Great Western Highway

48 Individual

Orange and red corridors - Appear to most directly affect village of Mount Victoria which is one of the few intact

Blue Mountain villages that hasn't been overdeveloped. It contains historic railway station, historic former Cobb &

Co inn, historic toll house, working picture theatre, historic post office, historic park, convict-built stone bridge and

remnants of our first historic pass. Can't believe that four-lane highway could be considered in dividing the town.

49 Individual

My preferred option is the blue corridor which uses the Newnes Plateau. There are two reasons for this. The first is

that it uses an existing road for most of the way (the Darling Causeway) then passes through undeveloped country

so there is minimal disruption to other landholders. The landholders affected already live beside a busy road.

49 Individual Newnes route, if properly built, would be a visionary project that would form the western end of the Bells Line

Expressway when it is eventually built.

49 Individual

Red corridor - Would closely mirror the existing highway. The people in this zone have already purchased near a

highway and are already affected by it. It would be going through marginal farmland/smallholdings and would

minimise damage to the most beautiful and environmentally desirable parts of the valley. Nevertheless, these

people do not deserve this thing being foisted on them when a better route exists - the Newnes Plateau.

49 Individual

I would like to voice my strong opposition to either the green or purple corridors which would run through some of

the most beautiful, peaceful and environmentally sensitive land in the valley. The people who built here could never

have dreamed a highway would be built on their doorstep, and to build in one of these corridors would basically be

an act of unparralelled vandalism which would blight the names and reputations of anyone involved in the project.

The steepness of the terrain would mean hacking into the landscape and one wonders if anything would really be

gained.

Individual

I support proposed northern route to bypass Mount Victoria and Lithgow. This route is currently being investigated

by RTA and its consultants along the line drawn on www.hhag.com.au. This route avoids any disruption to historic

Hartley Valley.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Tunnel option - Emissions from the tunnel will be easily removed and dispersed into the atmosphere because

Mount Victoria is one of the highest points on the Blue Mountains.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Newnes corridor - Cost of the project ($900 million) for the amount of projected traffic flow is ridiculous (5100

vehicle movements per day in 2011 rising to only 8300 by 2041). Furthermore judging by past projects the cost

estimates always blow out considerably and the traffic forecasts are usually overstated.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Orange corridor - Tunnel option at approximately $120m/km (this costing estimate was sourced from the RTA) is a

very cost-effective option. With an anticipated length of 2.2km and most importantly a gradient of only 3%, it would

cost only $264million. Allowing for a cost estimate of $100m for re-alignment and improvements through the

Hartley Valley to the existing highway and another $100m for River Lett Hill and the Forty Bends area, the total

cost of the project would come in at $464m. This is about the same as the estimated cost of the new corridor

through Hartley used in the Cardno comparative study with a Newnes Plateau corridor.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

The highway through Lithgow is already a bypass of the CBD and many businesses have been strategically built

along the highway. These businesses will be majorly affected by the Newnes Plateau option. There will also be an

impact on tourism and recreational choice and opportunity. The Darling Causeway, Bells Line of Road should be

listed as the “best and most scenic road journey in Australia”.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Tunnel option - Fulfills Bob Debus’s pre-election pledge to bypass Mount Victoria and upgrade the Great Western

Highway between Mount Victoria and Lithgow.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Newnes corridor - The engineering difficulties that this option will present are major with forecasts of cuttings up to

65m in depth as well as bridge crossings over Farmers Creek which is Lithgow’s water supply. Being sandstone,

this will require sediment containing and there has not been a good record of this so far in the construction work

undertaken on the Great Western Highway upgrade over the mountains. This is a major concern for the

environment and waterways.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Newnes corridor - The weather of the plateau also needs to be considered for frost/ice and snow issues.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

There is already a high quality dual carriageway between Tunnel Hill 12km west of Lithgow (where this option is to

join the existing Great Western Highway) and to South Bowenfels to the Mount Victoria side of Lithgow. The

Newnes Plateau option would be “duplicating” this piece of major road infrastructure

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

The engineering difficulties of the green and purple corridors are major as the corridors pass north of Mount

Victoria from Soldiers Pinch and will require crossing the main western railway line to get onto the causeway

before making it down the western escarpment to the Hartley valley.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Orange corridor - This corridor option with the tunnel under Mount Victoria would be an environmentally, socially

and cost effective way of achieving a bypass of Mount Victoria and a highway upgrade. It overcomes the historical

constraints by sticking to the existing highway with an improved alignment. It shows environmental responsibility as

well, which is so important in an area that adjoins a World Heritage listed national park.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Orange corridor - River Lett Hill can be easily improved and this can be the place where the earth that is removed

by tunneling is used, which will have a good cost saving potential.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Tunnel option is the only option that gives Mount Victoria and Victoria Pass a true bypass. The only heavy vehicles

that would be still using Victoria Pass will be the few vehicles that have what would be classed as “dangerous

loads” or majorly over sized loads (i.e. explosives or dangerous chemicals). It will make Mount Victoria the only

village in the Blue Mountains along the highway to truly have no highway through it.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Tunnel option has wide ranging community support and also most importantly, from key environment groups. It will

be something that all will be proud to support. The tunnel option is using 21st century technology to get over an

almost 200 year obstacle to transport west of the Blue Mountains. It improves an existing road corridor, not

replacing it with another.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

The Newnes Plateau area is a recognised special environment (it is listed in the Gardens of Stone Park proposal

stage 2 as well as many other significant publications and registrars) which contains many unique eco systems that

contain endangered flora and fauna.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

The Newnes Plateau area adjoins national park and is an important wildlife and vegetation zone between the

Wollemi Park Wilderness area and the urban and farmland areas to the west and south. The building of a highway

through this area would utterly destroy the free movement of fauna in these areas as well as causing untold

environmental destruction.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

The notion that “there is nothing there” is why the Newnes Plateau option was put forward in the first place and is

the exact reason why it should not be built. It is an ignorant view of our most precious resource, our environment.

This has even more significance in the case of global warming and that the Blue Mountains area holds World

Heritage status. We should have evolved from driving bulldozers through areas because all that is there is the

environment.

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

By putting a highway in Newnes Plateau area further opens it up to exploitation by the sand mining, coal mining

and the native and plantation forestry industries that are already operating in the area.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Red, green and purple corridors - these three corridor options will be environmentally damaging to the western

escarpment that has also been put forward in the Gardens of Stone Park Proposal Stage 2. This area west of the

Darling Causeway is very sensitive and should be protected. There is only one existing road west off the Darling

Causeway called Hartley Vale Road which was part of the original Bells Line of Road and is a very picturesque and

historic road.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

The indigenous heritage of the Newnes Plateau is of major significance because this area is the junction of the

Dharug, Gundungurra and the Wirrajerri tribes. There are many areas that still have not been identified formally in

this area.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

There are significant heritage sites in the Newnes Plateau area developed since European settlement that need to

be considered. These include the Zig Zag Railway (which is in the process of extending their track into the area ear

marked as the corridor), Newnes railway, the area known as the Clarence Cuttings on Chifley Road (which was the

old railway) and numerous other sites that have been identified and others yet to be formally identified.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Red, green and purple corridors - There are major historically significant sites that these corridors will have to

overcome both pre and post European settlement.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

We should be environmentally and socially responsible and the orange corridor with a tunnel under Mount Victoria

achieves this. The ban of 26metre 9 axle B-doubles should remain on the Blue Mountains section of the Great

Western Highway as no Blue Mountains community group supports these trucks. These road projects should have

realistic community consultation and time lines not driven by political agendas. All information should be available

to make the right decision. In this case the extensive Central West Transport Needs Study has not been made fully

available to the consultants engaged in the Mount Victoria to Lithgow project or to the community. We realise that

improvements are needed to the Great Western Highway and have engaged in this process to get the best

possible outcome for all concerned (this includes the environment).

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

The red corridor, unless they use a tunnel under Mount Victoria, will not pass the “Mount Victoria will be bypassed”

pledge made by Bob Debus.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

The Newnes Plateau was not part of the initial study area and was put forward as an option during the early stages

of the public consultation process. When it was first earmarked as a potential corridor option the RTA did an

appalling job of notifying the residents and property owners that would be affected by this corridor option, many

finding out about it by chance or in the media. The RTA also hastily organiaed a consultant (Cardno) to look into

this option without setting a budgetary figure on the project. The time line was being drawn up with the sole

purpose of “catching up” with the consultants (SKM) looking at the initial study area. The initial study area time line

was not drawn up for and on behalf of the community but was purely for political reasons as it is driven by a

political promise Bob Debus made during the 2007 federal government elections. The other most important aspect

of this project is the pressure from the freight Industry, as the design criteria is for the highway upgrade to be to Bdouble

standard (9 axle 26m).

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Newnes corridor - the inconvenience to local residents of the Clarence, Dargan, Bell, Mount Wilson and Mount

Irvine areas if the politicians make an absurd decision and pass this project. In the Cardno study it states the

Darling Causeway will possibly be closed to traffic during construction

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Newnes corridor - the only provision for the Clarence, Dargan, Bell, Mount Wilson, Mount Irvine, Mount Tomah and

Bilpin areas for emergency services is the Rural Fire Service. More accidents on the Bells line of road puts further

lives at risk and pressure on this volunteer organisation that was set up to protect property and the environment

from bush fires not attend motor vehicle accidents

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Newnes corridor - the total decimation of the Bell and Dargan communities with a highway constructed right

through them. It is noted on the report by Cardno that there will be significant impact on private land owners.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Newnes corridor - cost of the project ($900 million) for the amount of projected traffic flow is ridiculous (5,100

Vehicle Movements per Day in 2011 rising to only 8,300 by 2041). Furthermore judging by past projects the cost

estimates always blow out considerably and the traffic forecasts are usually overstated. The Newnes Plateau

corridor is longer and there will only be minor improvements in travelling time.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Newnes corridor - when the traffic estimates and projections were done the Bells Line of Road was not considered

to be impacted by increased traffic flows. This is a severe oversight as one of the reasons given for the highway

upgrade is because of the high accident rate on the existing road between Mount Victoria and Lithgow. The Bells

line of road already has a high accident rate and this will only dramatically increase if the Newnes Plateau option

goes ahead

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Traffic modelling has not been done on what extra traffic will go down the Bells Line of Road if either the green or

purple corridors are built. The extra traffic going down the Bells Line of Road will cause more accidents on this

already accident prone road.

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Mount Victoria Pass will still be a major route if the green and purple corridors are built.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

Tunnel option - is the shortest route and will have also the best gradient of all the options. This will massively

improve freight efficiency which is an important objective of the Highway upgrade.

 

58 Bells Action Group Against the Highway (BAGATH)

In these times of global warming and with many believing peak oil has already been achieved, we should all be

working to achieve better transport outcomes. This means using rail as a major freight and passenger carrier.

59 Individual Tunnel option is technically feasible and would be cheaper than a road over Newnes Plateau and economically competitive with Hartley Vale alternatives

 

59 Individual We propose a tunnel option under Mount Victoria village, through the escarpment and onto existing highway

easement.

 

59 Individual Tunnel option would have least impact on environment, social and heritage outcomes

 

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Tunnel option – would cost less than the $900million (at least!) Newnes Plateau option and less than the longer

Hartley Vale options.

 

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Cardno emphasises that the ‘do minimum’, base-case and Newnes Plateau routes are all about the same length.

This is valid in relation to such things as travel-time and fuel consumption, but in terms of construction needs

(energy, materials and time) the Newnes Plateau option is far more demanding by being 10-20km longer (varying

with the four corridors). For any Hartley Valley route the tract from Forty Bends to Marrangaroo already exists.

Furthermore, for the orange corridor some of the Great Western Highway from (say) Little Hartley to the River Lett

could be viable. Such savings should surely make a more ambitious approach to bypassing Mount Vic more

economic.

 

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Tunnel option – The adverse impacts on tourism and recreational opportunities that are associated with all the new

corridors.

 

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Cardno seems to have disregarded the impacts of the Newnes Plateau option bypassing Lithgow (beyond the

obvious implications for traffic movements). Is this matter of no concern or is it classed as collateral damage?

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor route must follow the Darling Causeway to Bell without impinging on the rail corridor and the

National Park, and without adversely affecting the headwater of the Grose River during and subsequent to

construction.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor must demonstrate an awareness of the need to avoid existing and approved sand and

sand/kaolin holdings, and be cognisant of the economic implications (for highly destructive sand mining) of

accessing additional areas of Newnes Plateau

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor route must recognise the full implications for construction and subsequent off-road activities of

traversing a region carrying exploded and unexploded ordnance.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor route must address the issues of snow, ice and ‘fog’ that characterise the high-level (>1200m)

Newnes Plateau.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Purple corridor route would need to follow the Darling Causeway to the Hartley Valley Road without impinging on

the rail corridor and the National Park, and without adversely affecting the headwater of the Grose River during and

subsequent to construction.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Purple corridor route would need to incorporate design features to minimise impact on the wildlife corridor where

the route enters the valley.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Purple corridor route would need to resolve the gradient-problems for the descent into Hartley Valley and to a

lesser degree for the region of the Forty Bends.

60 Blue Mountains

Conservation Society Purple corridor route would need to addresses the issues of snow, ice and fog where appropriate.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Orange corridor route would need to resolve the existing gradient-problems related to descending into the Hartley

valley and to a lesser degree in the region of the Forty Bends.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Orange corridor route would need to introduce design features at the lower end of the descent to enhance the N-S

wildlife corridor where it is currently breached.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society Orange corridor route would need to address the issues of snow, ice and fog where appropriate.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Blue Mountains Conservation Society (BMCS) believes that tunnel under Mount Victoria village, through the

escarpment and onto existing highway easement provides is best solution.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Tunnel option – Huge cost “blow outs”, reflecting the very difficult terrain traversed, are faced by all options, but a

tunnel scheme maximizes the use of existing highway in Hartley valley and from South Bowenfels (‘Lithgow South’)

to Marrangaroo.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor route must avoid impacting on swamps and scenic values of creeks and pagodas immediately

west of the Darling Causeway, and similarly avoid public lands that are included in the Gardens of Stone Stage 2

proposal and subject to the Public Lands Rationalisation process.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor route must avoid swamp-based and riparian ecosystems (e.g. Brown’s Swamp, Farmers Creek)

throughout the corridor across Newnes Plateau, and ensure their comprehensive protection during any envisaged

construction operations.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor route must be informed by the latest information on endangered economic communities and

threatened species in the affected regions of Farmer’s Creek and State Mine Creek (see submission #26 ).

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor route must avoid impacts on Lithgow’s water supply, including the Clarence Colliery transfer

scheme, in relation to construction and ongoing pollution from heavy-vehicle traffic.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor route must be compatible with Clarence Colliery’s past and future workings, and its exploration,

production and monitoring requirements.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Purple corridor route would need to avoid impacting on swamps and scenic values of creeks and pagodas

immediately west of the Darling Causeway and similarly avoid public lands that are included in the Gardens of

Stone Stage 2 proposal and subject to the Public Lands Rationalisation process.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Purple corridor route would need to avoid swamp-based and riparian ecosystems throughout the corridor, and

ensure their comprehensive protection during construction operations.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Tunnel option – The Gardens of Stone reserve proposal would not be transected by sandstone cuttings up to 65

metres deep and long ramps onto the Newnes Plateau.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Tunnel option – Newnes Plateau native vegetation would not be bulldozed and cleared during construction.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Tunnel option – Nationally endangered ecological communities, and threatened and regionally significant flora and

fauna of the western escarpment would be safe.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Tunnel option – Major impacts on wildlife corridors from all the new options would be avoided.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Tunnel option – Impact on conservation areas, including the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, would

be avoided.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Tunnel option – Farmers Creek water storage, Lithgow’s water supply, would not be jeopardised by the Newnes

option during construction and subsequently by contaminated road runoff and sediment.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

SKM makes much of the faunal N-S corridor immediately west of the Darling Causeway and it does indeed have

significance – yet the National Park east of the causeway is part of a much wider N-S tract of faunal migration – in

effect, the ‘faunal corridor’ is a component of a much broader tract. It should also be recognised that the Great

Western Highway and the Hartley Valley road already disrupts the continuity. The disruptive effect of a route using

the Hartley Valley road could be minimised and the Great Western Highway effect with reduced traffic could also

be ameliorated.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Cardno seemingly disregards the impact of an Newnes Plateau corridor on faunal migrations and floral migrations

from climate change. The notion put at one meeting that Newnes Plateau is a logged and degraded region that noone

cares about, could not be further from the truth. It is insufficiently recognised that the region would have been

National Park long ago were it not for the underlying coal resources!

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

BMCS will continue to oppose Newnes option on environmental, cultural, social and economic grounds

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

On the data presented, the green and red corridors seem less realistic than purple and orange corridors, are

deemed unacceptable by the BMCS and will receive no further consideration, despite SKM's assurance that each

corridor has capacity to provide a feasible route.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

BMCS believes purple corridor would yield feasible route but also believes that the environmental and social costs,

and the impacts on heritage are unacceptable

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

The BMCS considers that the existing orange corridor can yield an economically feasible route with the least

environmental, social and heritage impacts.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Newnes corridor route must fully avoid areas of indigenous and non-indigenous cultural heritage.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Purple corridor route would need to avoid or minimise impacts on sites of indigenous and non-indigenous cultural

heritage.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Orange corridor route would need to minimise impacts on sites of indigenous and non-indigenous cultural heritage

affected by the existing highway.

60 Blue Mountains Conservation Society

Will acceptance of the Cardno recommendation (as refined by more community consultation and environmental

Newnes Plateau) in February 2009 mean that the Newnes Plateau study will have parity with the Hartley Valley

results scheduled for mid-2009? If yes, will the ongoing (post-mid-2009) evaluation of routes to determine a

preferred route be based on the Cardno and SKM results, bearing in mind that different weightings, different grid

sizes, and different software were used?

61 Individual

Newnes Plateau option will be more costly to construct and maintain in the long term due to mine subsidence from

the old State Mine and Cobar Park Mine workings and Clarence Colliery workings at the eastern end of the

corridor, and the old Fernbrook Colliery and current Springvale Colliery long wall mine workings near Marrangaroo.

61 Individual

Newnes Plateau is the source of Farmers Creek, Lithgow's major drinking water supply. A new highway poses a

significant threat to Lithgow's water supply not only during construction but if there were a chemical spill, as

occurred at the base of Victoria Pass in 2003, and the steep terrain and short distance between the proposed route

and Farmers Creek Dam will make any such spill very difficult to contain before it enters Lithgows drinking water

supply.

61 Individual

Newnes Plateau is a priceless tourism asset of magnificent natural, scientific, educational and environmental

value. It is part of the Gardens of Stone National Park Proposal Stage 2, and is then eligible for inclusion in the

Greater Blue Mountains World

61 Individual

It upsets me that the Hartley residents have suddenly discovered they no longer want the Great Western Highway,

despite the fact it has existed in the Hartley Valley for more than 150 years and are pushing it towards villages of

Bell, Dargan and Clarence, not to mention Marrangaroo and Tunnel Hill. Similarly the residents of Kurrajong,

Berambing, Bilpin, and Mount Tomah do not appear to have been consulted, yet many people regard a Newnes

Plateau Route as a precursor to an eventual Bells Line Expressway. I do hope that the RTA is giving equal weight

to the genuine concerns of residents from these villages, many of whom purchased land in undisturbed bushland

areas, and not disturbed agricultural land with a highway running through it like Hartley, precisely because they

were seeking a peaceful bushland ambience unaffected by highway noise.

61 Individual

My family has owned land in the area for 40 years. On two prior occasions the RTA has compulsorily acquired

portions of our land to widen the Great Western Highway. Our land has been reduced as result and the RTA only

paid us a pittance for the 3 acres lost. The RTA took the only area of our land that had a spring to feed a dam, so

consequently we now no longer have enough water. The house my father built well back on the block to avoid

highway noise is now twice as close to the highway, and the traffic noise gets steadily worse every year. I consider

that the RTA has already greatly devalued our property by these two previous widenings of the Great Western

Highway widening, and that a Newnes Plateau option will destroy our property values altogether.

61 Individual

I believe bypassing all traffic from the Bells Line of Road and Great Western Highway past Lithgow will turn Tunnel

Hill into a Petrol Station Alley and fast food chain hub. This is because the petrol stations and likes of MacDonald's,

KFC, Red Rooster who will lose the passing trade in Lithgow will look to relocate - and Tunnel Hill is the most likely

area. This will totally destroy the peaceful bushland rural ambience we have spent 40 years creating. It will totally

ruin our lifestyle, our quality of life, our amenity, our environment, our hopes and our dreams for the future.

61 Individual

Newnes Plateau Route fails to meet the RTA's main objective of reducing traffic on Victoria Pass and through

Mount Victoria township. All local traffic from Lithgow heading east will still use the Great Western Highway and/or

Browns Gap Road because it will be shorter and quicker. All traffic heading east or west from Hartley, Hampton,

Jenolan Caves or Oberon won't use a Newnes Plateau route either.

86 Individual

The Rudd Government was elected on the premise of responsible government, including fairness and willingness

to listen to concerns of public. Those of us in Hartley Valley are concerned the RTA is seeking most expedient

option rather than a solution which meets historic and environmental guidelines.

87 Individual Budget should not be a deciding factor to finding a solution. Investigate alternative rail expansion and Newnes

Plateau before even considering destruction of historic and beautiful Hartley Valley.

88 Individual Would they (RTA) consider putting a four-lane highway through other picturesque and historic valleys such as Kangaroo Valley?

88 Individual

Our land has two (2) significant historic convict stockade and commissary sites which are not widely known

certainly not listed on any heritage register (draft or gazetted). Adjacent land also has convict stockade site(s)

albeit somewhat compromised by land recontouring / dams. The Box Track itself has a significant place in the

history of this Valley and should be left in its present form.

88 Individual

I believe the RTA are stool pigeons for the political will of Bob Debus and therefore can't be trusted to be objective

in the justification of this project. Public consultation process is thwarted from the outset when the project is driven

by political imperatives.

88 Individual

The need for this road has to be reviewed by an independent panel not of any political bent. Bob Debus seems to

be using this project as a political platform / springboard. Why else would he be so empassioned? Who is in his ear

pushing for this project?

88 Individual

We will be significantly disenfranchised from our peaceful setting. Four of the five Hartley Valley corridors identified

by the RTA will traverse through or close to our property. We consider this unacceptable and unnecessary. A

second arterial road through the valley will further denigrate the visual splendour and add tenfold to the existing

quarry site scar.

88 Individual Any new road as proposed will force us to seek maximum compensation as the peace and enjoyment of our land will be taken from us such as to force us to relocate maybe out of the entire area.

89 Individual Newnes corridor route - any extra initial costs will be more than compensated for as it is a realistic solution to a very real problem.

89 Individual

I would hate to see the beauty, cultural, environmental and historic heritage of this unique (Hartley) valley ruined for

the sake of some short term politically expedient tactic when a more suitable and effective route that will more than

adequately cater for the long term needs of through traffic particularly between the Coast and the Central and Far

Western regions of NSW is so readily available via the Darling Causeway and the Newnes Plateau to

Marrangaroo.

89 Individual The very strong and politicised Hartley valley community has a very long memory when it comes to election times.

89 Individual Cut through the Hartley Valley once again and the original problems of taking heavy transport into and out of the valley safely and at speed will still not be adequately addressed.

89 Individual

Improving the rail system to carry more freight would be a logical step particularly when the costs of fuel have been

soaring and greenhouse emissions of vehicular transport is now of particular concern. Even putting more

passenger trains between Katoomba and Lithgow would benefit the growing population of this valley and beyond.

Those of us who would prefer to catch the train to Katoomba and beyond to shop or seek medical treatment are

thwarted by the wait for the next train (up to two and a half hours in the mid afternoon of the business week).

90 Individual

Central to the decision will be money. It does not seem that the budget of the various proposals is so certain.

Nonetheless, it is exceedingly important that the decisions are based on the long term aspects of this project.

When we as individuals buy a house or a car we will normally take a long term view of the economic factors, as

distinct from decisions on short life perishable goods. The true cost of the road skirting the Hartley Valley should be

assessed on an annualised long term basis. Thankfully Sydney's iconic Harbour Bridge was built by men with

foresight and courage for the future.

90 Individual

Despite a number of alternatives proposed and being examined, we are simply dealing with the choice between

two options: (1) Should the highway be through the Hartley Valley? Or (2) Should the highway skirt the Hartley

Valley?

90 Individual

The Hartley Valley is pristine, unspoilt an easily accessible paradise for visitors away from the commercial and the

noise. It exudes serenity, peace and fresh country air, unpolluted by heavy traffic. It is where visitors bring their

children to see the farmlands, to experience the countryside, the wildlife and the natural environment preserved

through all ages past. They then visit the old town and enjoy the old world charm that teaches that there is more to

life than electronics and video screens. It is difficult to describe the importance placed on preserving the

environment for our children's children and their children. A decision to skirt the Hartley Valley will preserve for the

future the world they can treasure. Unthinkably, a decision to run a highway through the valley will remove for ever

the tranquillity and purity. This would be an irreversible, inescapable destination that we must not travel towards.

91 Individual

I have come across articles saying that if this area was in the USA it would be one of the most protected in the

state. We were told by Lithgow Council that the view from Collits Inn was a protected, heritage listed view. As they

have now got rid of their Heritage Officer and presumably are no longer interested in the wonderful heritage of this

area then we have to do all we can to protect it. The visitors book for Collits Inn mentions again and again the

history and tranquillity of this area. Are we about to let all of that go?

93 Individual

I've been camping at Hartley for 30+yrs and would be horrified if a 4-lane highway were constructed. Hartley is

2hrs from Sydney with access to bushwalking and camping sites. Leave Hartley untouched and keep it as beautiful

and peaceful as it is.

94 Individual

My property falls within the red/orange corridors and as yet have no idea of information as to what that means for

me and my family. Please explain in detail what affect either of these corridors will have on Ailsa Street. We object

to the red and orange corridors.

95 Individual Hartley Valley is one of the most magical places in NSW; I would not like to see it spoilt by a massive highway.

96 Individual If the intention is to avoid Victoria Pass and River Lett Hill there would appear to be little value in upgrading the highway along its present route.

96 Individual We live in Little Hartley and don't wish to be adversely affected by the upgrade. We would appreciate any

information that you are able to provide on this matter

97 Individual

Should any of the four corridor options that run through the Hartley Valley be accepted, Lithgow will be impacted.

The current Great Western Highway is already a busy road running through the western suburbs of Lithgow. It

already separates the hospital, a primary school, a busy medical practice and a new retirement housing estate

from the shops, railway and government services of the town. More land is being developed on that western side of

the highway. More people are going to need to get from one side of the highway to the other. This wasn't a problem

12 years ago before these developments started.

97 Individual

Without all the heavy trucks driving through Lithgow it will become a safer, cleaner and more pleasant town that will

also be able to reflect it's position close to the World Heritage areas of the Blue Mountains as a tourist centre,

particularly with the Emirates Resort being built in the Wolgan Valley north of Lithgow.

97 Individual

The Newnes Plateau/Marrangaroo corridor study found that the road that bypasses both Lithgow and Hartley

would be one to six minutes in time, shorter than any road that would go through the Hartley Valley and the

western Lithgow suburbs. It wouldn't be long before the Newnes Plateau option would prove to reduce travelling

times for heavy vehicles that the road is ultimately designed for by far greater a time span than a mere 6 minutes.

There would be no need for traffic lights should the Great Western Highway divert through Newnes to Mount

Victoria. No need for reduced speed limits through built up areas. There would not be the safety considerations

necessary should the highway remain on its current course through Lithgow.

98

Blue Mountains Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action Group;

Colong Foundation for Wilderness;

 Bells Action Group Against The

Highway;

Blackheath Action Group

In an age experiencing climage change and peak oil we need to reduce usage of fossil fuels and road transport for

freight.

98

Blue Mountains

Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action

Group; Colong Foundation

for Wilderness; Bells Action

Group Against The

Highway; Blackheath Action

Group

The hundreds of millions of dollars set aside for the bypass should be used to improve existing rail facilities

between Central West and Newcastle.

98

Blue Mountains

Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action

Group; Colong Foundation

for Wilderness; Bells Action

Group Against The

Highway; Blackheath Action

Group

The five corridors could see direct encroachment and substantial indirect impacts on Blue Mountains World

Heritage Area, and another highway carved down the face of the western escarpment. The corridors impact on

nationally endangered ecological communities.

98

Blue Mountains

Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action

Group; Colong Foundation

for Wilderness; Bells Action

Group Against The

Highway; Blackheath Action

Group

Members of the Hartley Vale/Hartley district and Bell/Clarence region have joined together to express extreme

concern over construction of Mount Victoria-River Lett Hill bypass

number Individual / organisation Summary of comment

98

Blue Mountains

Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action

Group; Colong Foundation

for Wilderness; Bells Action

Group Against The

Highway; Blackheath Action

Group

The five corridors impact on heritage sites.

98

Blue Mountains

Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action

Group; Colong Foundation

for Wilderness; Bells Action

Group Against The

Highway; Blackheath Action

Group

Members of our collective call for a 3 month extension to comment on corridors and an appropriate rescheduling of

the whole bypass timetable to ensure (a) the public can be informed by the Central West Transport Needs Study;

(b) either the commitment is made regarding NO 26m B-doubles through the City of the Blue Mountains or all

affected communities are consulted and advised of the consequences of any Mount Victoria-River Lett Hill bypass.

98

Blue Mountains

Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action

Group; Colong Foundation

for Wilderness; Bells Action

Group Against The

Highway; Blackheath Action

Group

Central West Transport Needs Study is currently unavailable for public comment yet the RTA's consultants indicate

they have been informed by this big picture study. It is ludicrous that the RTA persists with its bypass consultation

timetable in advance of the public release of the Central West Transport Needs Study.

98

Blue Mountains

Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action

Group; Colong Foundation

for Wilderness; Bells Action

Group Against The

Highway; Blackheath Action

Group

The five corridors have extreme social consequences.

98

Blue Mountains

Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action

Group; Colong Foundation

for Wilderness; Bells Action

Group Against The

Highway; Blackheath Action

Group

A substantial outcome of the bypass would be to enable 26m B-doubles easy passage across the 'sandstone

curtain'. RTA indicates that truck traffic is expected to increase by possible 4000 movements per day. These figures

are in addition to those made public in consultants reports and are due to a number of developments and container

terminals coming on line. The B-double agenda has not been shared with residents who will experience its

impacts. We seek firm commitment that the restriction on movement of 26m B-doubles across the Blue Mountains

will NOT be lifted. Or failing this, we ask that broader Blue Mountains community be included in an extended

consultation period.

98

Blue Mountains

Conservation Society;

Hartley Highway Action

Group; Colong Foundation

for Wilderness; Bells Action

Group Against The

Highway; Blackheath Action

Group

Projected passenger vehicle movements over the mountains, and Central West population changes certainly don't

justify the environmental, heritage and social costs in the bypass region and throughout the Blue Mountains

villages and towns.

99 Centroc

Centroc Board would like to see comparison with expenditure on other linkages into Sydney. West of Sydney has

no high speed link to its hinterland over the Mountains and this has significant triple bottom line impacts for both

Sydney and Central NSW.

99 Centroc

Centroc insists that costings for Newnes option need to be considered in light of the fact Great Western Highway

and Bells Line of Road are high risk roads. While Centroc supports any improvements to the Sydney-Dubbo

transport corridor that reduce risk to road users, investment strategies recognise the priority of the Bells Line of

Expressway.

99 Centroc Centroc requests future investigative work to consider the cost of corridors in the context of equity spending on

infrastructure with communities to the north and south of NSW.

99 Centroc

Centroc Board notes that Newnes study does not outline the significant economic benefit to the region that has

been predicted by the Western Research Institute. We request that future investigations address the economic

benefits to the region and includes the case for equity spending with other regions in NSW.

99 Centroc

Centroc insists that costings for Newnes option need to be considered in light of the fact Central NSW is placed at

significant competitive disadvantage as a consequence of inefficient transport systems. It is the only region

neighbouring Sydney without an expressway to access the metropolitan area.

99 Centroc Centroc insists that costings for Newnes option need to be considered in light of the fact that growth in mining and

agricultural sectors is anticipated and reliable access to sea and air ports is essential to facilitate this.

99 Centroc Centroc insists that costings for Newnes option need to be considered in light of the fact that tourism in the region

is primarily a car-based activity.

99 Centroc Centroc requests future investigative work to consider corridor options in the context of the potential to maximise

economic development for the region and weighting them accordingly.

99 Centroc Centroc insists that costings for Newnes option need to be considered in light of the routes being vulnerable to

closure due to inclement weather and/or accidents.

99 Centroc Centroc requests that any road upgrades include options for consideration that are 4 lanes. At the least a corridor

for future development of a high speed 4 lane road needs to be acquired.

99 Centroc

Centroc supports a junction at western end of Newnes option north of the turn off to Mudgee on Castlereagh

Highway. More investigation in suggested Reserve Road alignment is required - Centroc Infrastructure Group is

happy to provide advice in near future.

99 Centroc

Centroc is staunch supporter of the Bells Line of Expressway. It is our policy to endorse a staged approach to

development of Bells Line of Expressway where the western link mooted in the Newnes Plateau option is viewed

as a first stage.

99 Centroc Engineers of Centroc's Infrastructure Group will meet in first quarter of 2009 and will examine corridor options at

this point. The Board will provide advice to RTA regarding future corridor development.

99 Centroc Centroc requests future investigative work to weight favourably corridor options that fit with the Bells Line of

Expressway.

number Individual / organisation Summary of comment

99 Centroc

Freight linkage needs to be made between Sydney and the transport hub under development in Central NSW. Safe

B-double access into Sydney must be a minimum standard for all corridor options for linkage between Lithgow and

Mount Victoria. Centroc endorses the Newnes Plateau option to be built at 4-lane standard.

100 Lithgow City Council

Lithgow City Council is of opinion there is desperate need to provide a much improved route btwn Central West

and Sydney because Central West is placed at significant competitive disadvantage as a consequence of

inefficient transport systems. It is the only region neighbouring Sydney without an expressway to access the

metropolitan area.

100 Lithgow City Council

Lithgow City Council is of opinion there is desperate need to provide a much improved route between Central West

and Sydney because further growth in mining and agricultural sectors is anticipated and reliable access to sea/air

ports is essential to facilitate this.

100 Lithgow City Council Lithgow City Council is of opinion there is desperate need to provide a much improved route between Central West

and Sydney because tourism in the region is primarily car-based.

100 Lithgow City Council The need for a socio-economic impact assessment to be included for Lithgow if the town is to be bypassed.

100 Lithgow City Council

Lithgow City Council is of opinion there is desperate need to provide a much improved route between Central West

and Sydney because Great Western Highway and Bells Line of Road are high risk roads and NRMA crash

statistics suggest these two roads are most dangerous in NSW.

100 Lithgow City Council Lithgow City Council is of opinion there is desperate need to provide a much improved route between Central West

and Sydney because of vulnerability of current routes to closures due to inclement weather and/or accidents.

100 Lithgow City Council Corridors should all be based on 4-lane expressway

100 Lithgow City Council Further investigations should be made in relation to the takeoff point for the Newnes corridor proposal at

Clarence/Newnes junction, particularly in relation to the railway crossing.

100 Lithgow City Council Lithgow City Council is of opinion there is desperate need to provide a much improved route between Central West

and Sydney because ecological sustainability requires efficiency, which cannot be achived on the current route.

100 Lithgow City Council If the Newnes Plateau route is to be further considered, then the impact on Lithgow's water supply would need to

be assessed.

100 Lithgow City Council Lithgow City Council is accepting of Newnes corridor option but rejects the consideration of Reserve Road.

100 Lithgow City Council

Lithgow City Council is of opinion there is desperate need to provide a much improved route between Central West

and Sydney because neither Great Western Highway or Bells Line of Road can accommodate efficient freight

vehicles such as B-doubles and the rail system is accurately described as 19th century. Safe B-double access into

Sydney must be minimum standards of all options for linkage between Mount Victoria and Lithgow.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

It would be of interest to know if there was an improvement in the carbon footprint to any significant degree

between an old and new highway.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

Newnes option would be preferred option because it should have an improved carbon footprint as the road follows

the ridges.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

Climactic considerations appear to have lesser effect on purple corridor in comparison with options through the

valley.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

Newnes option does not impinge on farming opportunities.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

A new highway would need to allow access for local residents. We currently experience access problems at Mount

Street Glenbrook and Valley Road Valley Heights.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

Has the RTA carried out a geophysical study of the area given the extent of mining carried out in the area?

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

The proposed corridors through the Hartley Valley replicate the current Great Western Highway with different

gradients to the current highway.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

Would have been good if Central West Transport Needs Study had been completed prior to this project

commencing. The study would have revealed other issues that have not been addressed, namely use of rail and

road for freight, passenger conveyance, use of B-doubles/B-triples.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

The proposed corridors have potential to create vehicle noise.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

Purple corridor provides opportunity to continue enjoying views of the Valley from Darling Causeway.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

Newnes option would be preferred option because it directs traffic around the Hartley Valley.

101

Blue Mountains Commuter

and Transport Users

Association

Another aspect in support of Newnes option is the expected traffic that will be generated from the Resort being

developed in the area.

102 Nature Conservation

Council of NSW

The five corridor options run through sensitive ecological areas of high biodiversity value contiguous to the World

Heritage listed Blue Mountains National Park.

102 Nature Conservation

Council of NSW

Newnes Plateau is an area of rare, native beauty; a sandstone plateau with the highest elevation in the Blue

Mountains. It contains various rare species of plants. At least 70 hectares of significant woodland will be destroyed

during construction if this option is chosen.

102 Nature Conservation

Council of NSW

The region contains many endangered and threatened flora and fauna species under the Environment Protection

and Biodiversity Conservation Act (EPBC Act) and/or Threatened Species Conservation Act. These include:

sedgeswamps, Sydney Montane sclerophyll forest, heath and mallee such as Eucalyptus (Laophila pagodas),

Ganggang Cockatoo (Callocephalon fimbrratum) and Powerful Owl (Ninox Strenua).

102 Nature Conservation

Council of NSW

The Blue Mountains Western Escarpment wildlife corridor through swamp vegetation is on the eastern boundary of

the area. The wildlife corridor is narrow and in danger of being severed. This area is already under multiple threats

from coal and sand mining, as well as trail-bike riding.

102 Nature Conservation

Council of NSW

The Nature Conservation Council of NSW objects the Great Western Highway upgrade and supports the Colong

Foundation for Wilderness submission

number Individual / organisation Summary of comment

103 Individual We strongly oppose the orange and red corridors - the terrain of proposed route into the valley would appear to

provide a very steep gradient and require extensive disturbance to existing land forms and vegetation

103 Individual Blue corridor is by far the best engineering solution even if initial cost proves to be more expensive. This route

provides faster and safer trip to towns west of Lithgow with minimal disturbance to residential areas and bushland.

103 Individual

We strongly oppose the orange and red corridors - the route would take B-doubles and anticipated increase in

traffic through the centre of Mount Victoria would cause unacceptable noise pollution as well as an increased

danger to pedestrians and local traffic.

103 Individual

We strongly oppose the orange and red corridors - the route through the Valley would cause major disruption to

many historic farms and considerable disturbance to Browns Gap Road which we and many locals use as the

quickest route to Lithgow

103 Individual

Green and purple corridors would appear to be reasonable routes into and through Valley provided that they

bypass to the east of Mount Victoria village and railway station, and the route through Hartley Vale is selected to

minimise disruption to existing farms and bushland

103 Individual NSW Government should be encouraging transport of freight to western districts via rail rather than by heavy road

vehicles

104 Individual I am in favour of a tunnel under Mount Victoria village and using the existing Great Western Highway corridor as

much as possible. This option least expensive and most socially and environmentally acceptable

104 Individual

Unacceptable that a highway be built across any part of Newnes Plateau. The forest, gorges, canyons and

endangered swamps of Newnes Plateau provide a habitat for many rare and unusual plants with restricted

distribution and some which are found nowhere else. Newnes Plateau deserves protection from environmental

damage and is worthy of becoming part of the Gardens of Stone National Park

104 Individual

Existing highway corridor passes through degraded farmland where subdivision has occurred only in recent years.

People who live there or hope to make money out of subdivision have full knowledge that a highway passes

through the area

104 Individual Not acceptable that a highway be moved to disrupt lives of people who did not choose to live near a highway and

that peaceful community of Hartley Vale is destroyed

104 Individual The proposed upgrade in unjustified and funds should go into improving rail

105 Individual The Great Western Highway through Hartley will continue to be used by tourist traffic and Hartley/Mount Victoria

businesses will continue to enjoy the custom of those motorists.

105 Individual Purple corridor - Great Western Highway through Hartley will continue to be used by tourist traffic and

Hartley/Mount Victoria businesses will continue to enjoy the custom of those motorists.

105 Individual Green corridor - adverse affect on tourism

105 Individual Red corridor - isolates the existing Hartley businesses and severely threatens their viability

105 Individual Newnes corridor - will avoid the notorious ice problems In the area known as Forty Bends

105 Individual

Currently a movement by certain groups to have the boundaries of the Gardens of Stone National Park extended.

The proposed extension would include some of the corridor proposed by Cardno. There is an opportunity to

acquire the road corridor now which will not be available if the extension to the park is effected

105 Individual Purple corridor - located at the northern extremity of the valley and would not cut such an ugly swathe through the

valley as would the other routes

105 Individual Purple corridor - possible to reduce the impact of the highway as it has a high mountain range as a backdrop

105 Individual Red corridor - traverses the central flood plain and the necessary drainage structures etc will worsen the visual

impact

105 Individual Newnes corridor - offers a permanent solution to a problem that has been confronting road builders since 1813

105 Individual

We trust that common sense and the interest in the common good will prevail and that Governments will adopt the

Newnes Corridor proposal. It would certainly be a great way to mark the bicentennial of the first Blue Mountains

Crossing in 2013.

105 Individual Newnes corridor - avoids Hartley Valley thus helping to conserve a national treasure

105 Individual Purple corridor - will result in the destruction of the old (1823) Hartley Vale Road and will impact on the historical

mine workings and buildings of Hartley Vale

105 Individual Green corridor - impact on Heritage values

105 Individual Orange corridor – will cause a major confrontation between the RTA and the various heritage organisations

including the National Trust

105 Individual Green corridor - impact on land owners

105 Individual Red corridor - impacts on almost every residential subdivision in the valley

105 Individual Newnes corridor - provides access to the Bells Line of Road as well as the Great Western Highway

105 Individual Purple corridor - provides access to the Bells Line of Road as well as the Great Western Highway

105 Individual Purple corridor - will adversely impact the peace and quiet of the valley

105 Individual Green corridor - unacceptable visual and aural impact on the valley

105 Individual Red corridor - visual and aural impact is the worst of all the proposals.

105 Individual Red corridor - will impact the social fabric of the valley by physically dividing properties

105 Individual Red corridor - opportunities for horse and cycle riding will be reduced; enjoyment of rock climbers on the cliffs of

Mount York will be greatly reduced

105 Individual Orange corridor – will destroy the existing hamlet of Little Hartley including its heritage buildings

105 Individual

Newnes corridor - is more suited to the requirements of heavy vehicles. It will result in the removal of all heavy

vehicles from the Lithgow CBD, from Scenic Hill and from the developing residential areas of Marrangaroo and

Bowenfels

105 Individual Purple corridor - will have the effect of reducing traffic on Browns Gap Road across the valley floor.

105 Individual Purple corridor - will likely result in an increase in traffic through Browns Gap and the historic Vale of Clwydd

105 Individual Purple corridor - is not ideally suited to heavy traffic

106 Orange City Council

Council believes the appropriate cost comparison between the Newnes corridor and the base case should involve

a full operating cost analysis, taking into account the savings made in areas such as travel times, reduced accident

potential and improved vehicle operating costs. As well the social and environmental issues associated with

removing through traffic from residential areas of Lithgow, as well as the possible economic impacts, also need to

be fully assessed to enable a true comparison to be made between the alternative routes.

106 Orange City Council

Newnes corridor - a significant engineering benefit of this option is that it can be staged if necessary whereas the

base case option does not provide any staging opportunities. Further refinement of the engineering design could

result in construction cost savings.

106 Orange City Council

Council strongly urges RTA to develop the preferred route as a four lane option possibly delivered over time in

different configurations as dictated by traffic volumes. To not plan for an ultimate four lane road would be out of

context with the Great Western Highway to both the east and west of this section, where four lanes already exist

west of Lithgow towards Mount Lambie and the upgrading of the Great Western Highway to Katoomba is ultimately

aimed at provision of a four lane road.

106 Orange City Council Newnes corridor - is already subjected to disturbance making the impact of a new road through this area less than

through an area of significant ecological value.

106 Orange City Council

Orange City Council fully supports the further investigation into the proposed Newnes Plateau option as a viable

solution in providing an improved transport link along the western escarpment of the Blue Mountains and forming a

strategic link in the transport corridor between Sydney and the Central West.

106 Orange City Council

Council urges the RTA to consider the Newnes Plateau option as part of the overall strategic transport link between

Sydney and the Central West. Council believes that by taking this broader view of the project, the argument for

adopting the Newnes Plateau route becomes compelling, due to the significant long term transport efficiencies this

route provides. This long term view is in concert with the Federal Government’s goal of delivering critical

infrastructure to boost national productivity and provide sustainable long term benefits to the community.

107 Individual

If reserved for conservation reasons, Newnes Plateau could offer a host of eco-tourism opportunities and Lithgow

could also benefit from this. It could provide an economic buffer to offset some of the other adjustments that would

likely be required to the fossil fuel industries that operate in this region in the light of climate change reparations.

107 Individual Newnes corridor is higher and more prone to snow and ice.

107 Individual

The Newnes Plateau adjoins the World Heritage Wollemi National Park – and many believe it has ecological and

scenic importance in its own right to be also conserved for natural heritage reasons. Newnes Plateau has the

greatest biodiversity in its ecological communities in the entire region. It is true that currently many parts of the

Newnes Plateau have poor land management practices - with illegal trail bike riding. However, these, with the

appropriate land designation adjustments could be remediated. A large highway by contrast would be a much

more significant and permanent adverse incursion on the natural heritage of this area. That is, the area proposed

for the Great Western Highway through the Newnes Plateau is not through some bush wasteland but is part of an

integrated (or potentially integrated) area of significant natural heritage.

107 Individual Newnes corridor would cut across Lithgow's water catchment and represent a significant fire risk to the Wollemi

wilderness and to Lithgow.

107 Individual Hartley has long been a transport corridor for Aboriginal people and since early European settlement. A highway

through the Hartley valley would just represent a continuation of this historical tradition.

107 Individual

The significant natural heritage of the Newnes Plateau, the historical tradition of the Hartley Valley in being a

transport corridor and the lack of a convincing argument to favour the Hartley Valley private property interests over

those communities to the north make it clear that any highway upgrade should occur in the Hartley Valley. Such an

option is likely to be significantly cheaper.

107 Individual Newnes Plateau route would shift the adverse impacts on private property elsewhere affecting the communities of

Bell, Dargan and Clarence.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group Hartley community is concerned that cost of base case has been significantly understated

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Hartley valley community believes that additional ‘through the valley’ route costs plus 'yet to be assessed' savings

that will accrue relating to the intangibles benefits referred to in the Newnes study, may well make the cost

difference between the two route options negligible

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Any of the proposed routes through the valley will result in a by-pass of Hartley businesses. The loss of trade

would likely cause the businesses to close. These businesses also offer an amenity to Hartley and Kanimbla

residents and the social effect would be immeasurable.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The four routes through the valley still drop unnecessarily 300 metres into the valley, a total negative for transport,

both commercial and private, in this carbon constrained and pollution sensitive 21st century.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The northern end of the Hartley Valley regularly experiences winter temperatures colder than minus ten degrees,

late clearing fog and serious smoke inversion problems during bush fire periods. Pollutants from 14,000 vehicles a

day would only add to these hazards.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

All four valley routes still have to negotiate the Forty Bends section of the Great Western Highway under Hassans

Walls, a notorious accident black spot due to the recurrent black ice in winter.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The base case line of road will require substantial backfilling/stabilisation of historic mine shafts in the Hartley Vale

village area

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The base case does not allow for adequate management of severe road ice, (the back of the valley is a frost

hollow that suffers temperatures lower than minus ten (and occasionally as low as minus fifteen) on up to 30 days

per annum)

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The preliminary study may not have adequately taken into account the cost of the fill and engineering required to

manage the unstable soils in the mid valley. The valley turns into a swamp in wet times and even minimal rains

make road degradation in the region a constant reality.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Insufficient funds have been allocated to provide fog lighting. The valley suffers significant night fogs that are often

late clearing in the narrow end of the valley (and there may well be photosynthetic smog issues from pollution

related to a road running through the valley)

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Two of the proposed routes will impact hugely on the creeks and swampy land which is part of the River Lett

riparian system, an important part of the Sydney Water Catchment Area.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Two of these routes would pass through endangered species habitat such as the Copperwing butterfly, the

threatened Spotted Quoll, and sensitive hanging swamps.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The highway upgrade decision cannot be made on the basis of cost alone but should be made in the context of our

role as custodians of the future. We do not want to find that we are marking the bicentennary of the first crossing of

the Blue Mountains in 2013 with a road that destroys our past

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The green has the potential to severely compromise both the historic site of Hartley Vale village and Lawson’s

Long Alley, a convict built track that was used for all crossings of the mountains between 1822 and 1832.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The red, green and purple routes identified will also potentially compromise the remnant remains of the historic

road through the valley constructed by Edmund Lockyer in 1828 (the Box track), or certainly the western end

thereof that falls under the merged western ends of the red, green and purple route lines.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The orange route along the existing line of the road is unacceptable for the fact that it simply cannot fit through the

wealth of heritage assets that line this road.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Both the red and orange routes also potentially compromise the historic mountain village of Mount Victoria and

would potentially impact on heritage sites in their transit into the valley.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

There is a plethora of more intimate heritage assets, from the spear sharpening and splatter hand marks left by the

traditional custodians of the valley through to a raft of uncatalogued heritage items that litter the valley.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The historic village of Hartley Vale would be compromised by two of these routes, as would the historic mine

shafts, historic shale works and early heritage rail infrastructure

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The valley was the meeting place of three separate indigenous groups, the Wiradjuri, Dharug and Gundungurra

people . Any road offers the potential to compromise the abundance of indigenous heritage in the valley left by

these traditional custodians.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group Appendix A to submission #108 describes 19th century heritage assets in Hartley Valley

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

We have not been able to satisfy ourselves as to the integrity of the August constraints workshops and invite the

RTA to remedy this by providing access to the full audit trail of information from cataloguing to the final constraint

maps.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

It is poor timing to undertake this highway upgrade project at a time when the Central West Transport Needs Study

could inform public debate at what might constitute the best course of action on a major infrastructure upgrade.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Hartley community concerned that the Newnes option doesn't account for the positive intangibles mentioned in

Cardno report that might flow from proceeding with that route. We ask the RTA to consult with Lithgow City Council

and other stakeholders to discuss these opportunities and build the value of these opportunities into the cost

benefit analysis of the alternative options.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Since the conclusion of and resolution of the RTA study in the valley in 2001, many of the rural residential

subdivisions in the Hartley Valley, only then recently created, have been settled on with substantial homes,

landscaping and farmlets. At least one route will significantly impact this community.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The purple route will devastate the ambience if not the actual fabric of the track (now Hartley Vale Rd) cut down

into the valley by Archibald Bell in 1823.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group This road would bisect the most historic valley in Australia.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The valley is small and narrow with steep escarpments that will hold in noise, vibration, pollution and light (fog

lights).

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

Two of the routes cut a swathe through farm land, virtually negating the livelihood of the Hartley farming

community.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

The valley has an active community that engages in a range of community activities. Any road through the valley

has the potential to damage this capacity.

108 Hartley Highway Action

Group

A valley route will result in heavy vehicles still continuing to use Main and Mort Streets Lithgow, to access the Bells

Line of Road. Such a route would result in 26 metre B-Doubles being introduced to the residential areas of

Bowenfels and Marrangaroo, and Browns Gap and the historic Vale of Clwydd will see an undesirable increase in

traffic.

109 Individual

A corridor very close to the red corridor was rejected by RTA's consultants in 1999. This part of the Valley is the

upper water course of Butler's Creek. The red corridor cuts through the entire area protected by Mr Laurence

O'Connell's series of dams. A highway would destroy the riparian balance created by these dams. Continuation of

a red corridor from Fields Road would still encounter boggy country along the continuing course of Butler's Creek.

109 Individual Construction of a 4-lane highway through the red corridor would be hugely expensive requiring considerable flood

control, would interfere with Butler's Creek as a tributary of River Lett (part of the Warragamba catchment)

109 Individual

A tunnel under Mount Victoria would impact upon the undisturbed bushland in the triangular gully between Victoria

Pass and Mount York which is part of the wildlife corridor running the length of the escarpment from Mount Victoria

to Bell.

109 Individual

The purple corridor would impact on the escarpment to the north with its hanging swamps, on the creeks such as

Dargan’s Creek which form part of the Warragamba catchment. It appears to be the longest route through the

Hartley Valley and would contain areas of swampy land, and, under the shadow of the escarpment, areas of early

frosts, fog and black ice

109 Individual

Heritage constraints in the Hartley Valley are recognised by the National Trust of Australia (NSW) and include

Collitts Inn, Mount York Cemetery, Blackman-Merrick Cemetery and various indigenous artefact areas. Collitts Inn

is registered with the State Heritage Office and construction of a 4-lane highway impacting on its curtilege would

constitute a fatal flaw within RTA's recognised guidelines.

109 Individual

Orange and red corridors - five historic inns of Little Hartley built on the Great Western Highway between 1831-

1865; archaeological site of Victoria Pass convict stockade; Rosedale; convict built causeway; pinch point between

Harp of Erin and Ambermere.

109 Individual Hamlet of Little Hartley identified as a rare linear village.

109 Individual RTA is aware of, and acknowledged then and now, the restrictions of the Burra Charter (Australian adoption of

ICOMOS). Neither Harp of Erin or Ambermere can be moved because of the pinch point created

109 Individual

Green and purple corridors - any descent from the Darling Causeway into Hartley Vale should not impact on the

historic Lawson’s Long Alley or Lockyer’s Track lines. These are now historic lines of road, as well as much used

walking tracks. Such descent should not impact on Collitts Inn or the Mount York cemetery. The lower part of

Lawson’s Long Alley contain significant remnants of shale oil workings, as described in my prior submission

109 Individual The village of Hartley Vale and the historic Comet Inn would also suffer from the impact of a 4lane highway along

the green corridor.

109 Individual

Thr Hartley Valley is identified by the National Trust as a conservation area. It does not at this stage have State or

national classification. Nobody except The National Trust has classified the many heritage significant items in the

area. Lithgow City Council has been upgrading its LEP since 1995 and has still not completed its list of heritage

items to become the new annexure to the LEP. Perhaps the RTA should consider those items on the draft

Lithgow Heritage list and on the National Trust classification list, as well as items already on the State Register

as“fatal flaws” to a construction of a highway in their vicinity

109 Individual

Red corridor - residents and property holders in the subdivisions purchased in the belief that they were within a

tranquil rural residential subdivision created with the approval of The Council of The City of Greater Lithgow. They

were entitled to believe, as the Ambermere Drive residents were entitled to believe after 2001, that their tranquility

would not be disturbed

109 Individual

Little Hartley village, over eight years, has developed restaurants, galleries, gift and lolly shop, and nurseries which

attract tourists. Houses have now been built to the south of the highway where the diversion would have been

constructed. The village has become a focus for the community resident in the rural residential sub-divisions

about Baaner’s Lane, Ambermere Drive and Coxs Road. Residents eat at the restaurants, visit the galleries, and

buy farm supplies at Adams Shed located in mid-Hartley. A 4-lane highway would destroy the village

109 Individual

Little Hartley needs a safe walking or horse riding track and a bicycle lane on either side of the highway, a speed

limit less than 90k and freedom from the huge semi-trailers which thunder through the village, causing damaging

vibration, noise not conducive with a reasonably comfortable life style, and danger to vehicles and pedestrians. It

is not safe to exit with vehicles from any of the fourteen property drives from the foot of Victoria Pass to Baaner’s

Lane

109 Individual Construction of a 4-lane highway through the red corridor would severely affect the amenity of all the properties in

Ambermere Drive.

109 Individual Green and purple corridors - may impact on views from Collitts Inn and disturb tranquil ambience of historic Mount

York cemetery

109 Individual

It has long been the view of the wider Hartley community that the Newnes Plateau is a sensible option for a freight

highway to the western plains. The Newnes corridor could be a route for the future in terms of the Central West

Transport Needs Study and the wider view of state transport problems

110 Individual

The proposed new line would have a number of engineering and political advantages, including: 1. Avoidance of

any substantial disturbance to Blackheath township; 2. Bypassing of Mount Victoria; 3. Bypassing of Victoria Pass;

4. Avoidance of the Historic Buildings at Little Hartley; 5. The length of new road would be about 15km, which is

less than most corridors suggested at present; 6. After initial meetings with a number of environmental groups it

would seem that the environmental impact of this route would be far less than the purple, green or blue proposed

corridors, and may be accepted as a compromise.

110 Individual Possible problems in the plan could be: 1. Impact on Kanimbla Valley and southern Hartley residents; 2. The need

for a tunnel under the head of Shipley Plateau of up to 2km in total (perhaps less when studied by engineers)

110 Individual

Considering the extension of the area that is now proposed to be upgraded from Lithgow to Mount Victoria now

proceeding all the way to Katoomba it would seem logical to investigate solutions that could address problems

across the entire area. There is a line that I don't think has been looked at - it descends from about the intersection

of Evans Lookout Rd and the Great western Hwy (East of Blackheath) into the Kanimbla Valley at Centennial Glen,

then via the valley floor to re-join the existing highway above (to the East of) the historic Hartley Village.

111 Individual

The study should take into account the likely increased costs of carbon emissions as foreshadowed by the Federal

Government for 2020 and 2050. It should also take into account likely increases in fuel costs as forecast by

ABARE and other Federal agencies.

111 Individual

SKM refer to the AUSLINK study that stated that “The severe grades and alignment of the Great Western Highway

at Victoria Pass and River Lett Hill impose high road user costs” (SKM 1.2). Actual data on potential savings is

seen as Phase 2 activity (SKM 7.2). When the data becomes available, a comparative State-wide investment

return analysis should be undertaken.

111 Individual

Hydrology - the 100 year ARI is a flow rate, which in itself does not provide sufficient information on environmental

vulnerability. Hydraulic studies using models like HEC-RAS and Mike Flood can provide information on flow

velocities and areas inundated that will better capture vulnerability. HEC-RAS has been used in RTA Great

Western Highway upgrade studies but the emphasis, certainly in the Lawson upgrade sections, has been on

modelling urbanised area impacts. This urban focus should be expanded to include natural areas in subsequent

phases of the IEI. The Lawson study also featured a design criteria of not making bigger floods of a magnitude that

occur more often than once in 5 year. The Lawson design criteria allowed less frequent floods to actually get

bigger. No such criteria should be adopted in subsequent phases of the IEI. Instead a balanced triple bottom line

approach should determine what increased flooding, if any, should be allowed in natural areas.

111 Individual The Cardno and SKM reports and the community consultation process commissioned by the RTA should be

commended for their methodology and breadth.

111 Individual This submission requests that any choice of a best route based upon numerical/GIS means will be reversible if

detailed on-ground studies show problems with it.

111 Individual

Future phases of the initial environmental investigation should clearly spell out the influence of coal mining titles on

any ultimate choice of a route. This could be done by a sensitivity analysis where coal titles are removed from the

analysis and a non coal title influenced route is chosen. It may be a reality that coal mining cannot be stopped but

the costs it brings to bear should be transparent.

111 Individual

This submission calls for a study to be undertaken to objectively analyse the upstream village and tourism impacts

of increased truck and other traffic as a result of the proposed highway upgrade. The study should include possible

mitigation actions like sound barriers and sound proofing individual homes.

111 Individual

Subsequent phases of the initial environmental investigation studies should include a study that expands on the

“do minimum” scenario (Cardno section 20.1) and investigates the works required and associated costs of

achieving the RTA’s State Plan target for 2016 of 0.7 per 100 million vehicle kilometres travelled (currently 1.5 per

100 million vehicle kilometres travelled in the Mount Victoria to Lithgow portion of the Great Western highway). The

study should include an assessment of the investment return gained in comparison to possible crash reduction

investments in other parts of the State. It is noted in this regard that the Great Western Highway between Mount

Victoria and Lithgow did not feature in the in the NRMA’s NSW 2006/07 list of the top 100 black spots.

111 Individual

The expanded “do minimum” study asked for in the safety section of Cardno's report could be expanded to include

an investigation of the costs and State-wide comparative investment gains in adding additional overtaking lane

stretches to reduce travel times. However, it is noted that as the highway has many traffic lights and 60 km/hr to

80 km/hr speed zones between Mount Victoria and Blaxland, a 6.7 minute gain does not seem particularly

significant.

111 Individual

This submission calls for a study in subsequent phases of the initial environmental investigation that examines the

economic and environmental benefits of adding additional track capacity and reversing the down-grading of rail

infrastructure within the region as an alternative to an upgrade of the highway to overcome the freight impediment.

112 Individual Within the boundaries of our property we regularly sight Gang Gang parrots, Diamond Firetail Finches and the

NPWS has confirmed Copperwing Butterfly habitat - all endangered or threatened species

112 Individual

Our property is a good example of the historic homes that can be found in the Hartley Valley. The property is

littered with historic remnants (eg we recently found a muzzle loading musket barrel, artefacts from the old

industrial plant at Hartley Vale, a holey dollar from Governor Macquarie's time).

112 Individual

Road through Hartley would destroy not only the ambience of the valley, but the chance for future generations to

see in context a whole host of historical assets. The valley should be regarded as sacrosanct. There is so much

history neatly encapsulated between pristine escarpments. The place is of special importance and significance in

context of European settlement in Australia and needs to be respected and preserved for future generations.

113 Individual Tunnel option would be much cheaper than the Newnes Plateau corridor

113 Individual

I think the option to follow the existing highway (orange corridor) if combined with a tunnel under Mount Victoria

emerging in the Hartley valley so as to bypass Mount Victoria and Victoria pass would be the best option to

minimise impacts on people and enviroments not already impacted by the current highway. it would give more

good quality four lane highway between Tunnel Hill and Soldiers Pinch compared to three lanes for Newnes

Plateau

113 Individual Tunnel option would have the advantages of preserving the north south wildlife corridor

113 Individual Tunnel option would have the least heritage impact compared with the new corridors in North Hartley valley and

Newnes Plateau.

113 Individual Tunnel option would have the least social impact compared with the new corridors in North Hartley valley and

Newnes Plateau.

113 Individual Tunnel option would divert all traffic from Victoria pass

114 Individual Hartley Valley is the oldest and most historic valley in Australia. Please refer to the National Treasure at Risk

Document provided by the Hartley Highway Action Group

114 Individual

Bob Debus promised the people of Mount Victoria that the town will be spared and Victoria Pass will be upgraded

and because of this the red and orange corridors were unacceptable and 'did not pass the test'. Why was a

promise made to Mount Victoria residents and not to Hartley Valley residents? Each area is at least equal in

historic value. Why spend money and time discussing 5 corridors? Why is the RTA still telling people there are 5

corridors?

114 Individual

We own a property in the area. Soon to retire, we have had our property on the market for most of this year. Since

announcement of the Mount Victoria to Lithgow upgrade no one has expressed interest in our property. We have a

mortgage, due to upgrading our property to get a good price when we sell. We now have to pay interest rates on a

semi retired salary which we had not accounted for. Our home may have sold before the credit squeeze, at the

market value of the time, if people had not been scared away because of the Mount Victoria to Lithgow project and

we fear having to wait until December 2009 the house market will drop even more. We may then be told we are not

in the chosen corridor and then have to start selling our house at a market low. If we are the unfortunate victims of

the green coridor we will only be paid out the market value at the time. If we are the victims of the purple coridor

and have this highway on our boundary fence it will totally ruin our property and there will be no compensation.

114 Individual Purple corridor - would destroy the views from our property, would create noise and air pollution, and require

conspicuous fog lighting.

115 Individual I urge the serious consideration of utilising the existing highway corridor and exploring the option of a tunnel to

solve the 'geometrical' issues for large trucks.

115 Individual

What about the massive environmental impacts of moving the highway from its present corridor? I know all of the

areas to be potentially impacted - Mount Victoria village, the Hartley Valley, Darling Causeway and Newnes

Plateau. All of the proposed routes (except perhaps the existing corridor) would create massive new

environmental impacts, and any attempt to compare one against another will get down to splitting hairs, or

weighting apples over oranges

115 Individual

I am inclined (pending the release of further environmental studies) to reluctantly favour the option with the

smallest total impact, with particular reference to area (impact). It seems like madness to me to countenance

spreading the impact all along the Darling Causeway and across the Newnes Plateau, a route that will still have

major impacts on the Hartley Valley anyway.

115 Individual The planning process should be delayed to ensure the implications of the Central West Transport Needs Study are

fully integrated

115 Individual

The concept of diverting the highway around Mount Victoria village (where I live) to protect it is fundamentally

flawed, because it simply means that substantial impacts will be visited on other locations with equal or superior

values. E.g. why should populations in Hartley Valley, or Bell/Dargan/Clarence be asked to suffer to protect the

residents of Mount Victoria? Why should the heritage values of Hartley Valley be impacted to protect similar

values in Mount Victoria?

115 Individual I fundamentally object to increasing road freight over the Blue Mountains because rail is a better long-term solution

116 Individual

Of the 5 options mooted I strongly object to only one- the Newnes Plateau proposal. As a Lithgow resident I place

great importance on the preservation of the natural values of Newnes Plateau. Many unique plant and animal

communities exist there. It encompasses several important creeks which feed the Colo River--these must remain

pristine. The proposed road corridor would bisect the Plateau, seriously degrading it's natural values. I would like to

see the road go thru Hartley Valley somewhere-- here essentially we are dealing with farmland only, land far

removed from any wild or native beauty.

116 Individual Newnes Plateau is a unique area close to Lithgow very important for recreational use (bushwalking, canyoning,

cycling)

117 Individual

The Blue Mountains Conservation Society is advocating a tunnel under the Upper Mountains escarpment. This

idea should be seriously considered as it would be a solution not only for the Upper Mountains residents but also

for residents of Bathurst, Orange, Mudgee

117 Individual None of the 5 corridors are satisfactory solutions

117 Individual Removing heavy vehicles from the highway would make it much safer for all residents in the Blue Mountains. Truck

traffic is not just a problem of the Upper Mountains but for the whole of the Blue Mountains

117 Individual State and Federal Governments should consider options for shifting majority of freight to rail - which would be a

good use of some of the Federal Government's recently announced infrastructure spending

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Construction of any proposed option would generate and encourage the generation of signficant amounts of

greenhouse gases.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

A 5% improvement in travel times and user travel costs does not satisfy the expenditure of between $450m-$900m

for construction of a bypass with high social and environmental impacts

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes option would be poor value for money. The proposed route requires construction of 30.5km new Highway

standard road, whereas the purple option requires the construction of approximately 20km new road. All things

being equal, 30% more road length, translates into 30% more construction cost for an inferior road option, in terms

of road serviceability. The costs of the proposed Newnes option, however, cannot be considered on an equivalent

basis. The Newnes option costs are increased relative to the other options by greater topographic and

environmental protection constraints. The extra economic costs for the Newnes option are 60% greater than the

other options for the steeper 8% slope and almost 100% greater to achieve the 6% grade. The Newnes option

traverses the highest point in the Blue Mountains Range (1150 metres), and doing so maximising costs of reducing

road grades. It appears the reason an 8% grade suboption is being considered for this corridor is because of the

high elevation of the top of the Plateau relative to the surrounding terrain and the ludicrous cost of the 6% grade

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes option - if the proposed corridor alignment is deflected south of stored waters in the Farmers Creek

reservoir, the cost will be even greater. In these circumstances, the usual 70 per cent cost contingency would

appear to be inadequate for the Newnes option.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The hundreds of millions of dollars saved from not building the $900 million Newnes proposal, but some other

option, could be transferred to pay for rail upgrades. An upgrade of the Stockinbingal!Parkes line would provide a

major cross!country link between the Main South and Main Western lines. The Blayney on the Main Western Line

south!west to Demondrille on the Main South Line also avoids the difficulties for Blue Mountains rail crossing for

heavy freight. Rail facilities for the line in the north from Sand Hollow to the Hunter Valley could be upgraded with

the money saved from cancelling the Newnes corridor proposal or cancellation of the proposal altogether.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes, purple, green and red corridors - road safety declines with these options. These options would see

greater light and medium weight traffic on the Bells Line of Road. This would disproportionately increase accidents

and fatalities on this road, cancelling any safety benefits from these options.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness Road safety on the existing highway could be greatly enhanced by the use of speed cameras

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The Colong Foundation proposes an amended orange corridor consisting of a tunnel commencing somewhere

east of Browntown Oval and descending under Mount Victoria village to emerge at a point somewhere below

Berghofers Pass, just north of the current alignment. The amended corridor option could then pass west and south

of the Gt. Western Highway alignment somewhere below the foot of Victoria Pass and then generally westerly

behind Little Hartley to rejoin the existing alignment two kilometres west of that village

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Waste from a proposed tunnel could be utilised, in part, in the construction of a viaduct ramp toward the western

escarpment tunnel exit point and also a ramp for an elevated bridge over the River Lett. The ramps would permit

the reduction in grade of the western River Lett Hill and for the tunnel as well

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness The Colong Foundation's proposed amended orange corridor (tunnel) is the only option that improves road safety

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Should tunnel option prove to be unacceptable, then purple corridor should be considered as a last resort. The

purple option represents the least damaging of the corridors so far presented that immediately satisfies the political

promise made for some sort of bypass.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes option - all of the narrow Darling Causeway must be traversed by the Newnes option, not just a part of it

as with the green and purple options. This additional section of Causeway will add to the cut and fill and to

embankment construction expenses, which can be avoided by the less severe Valley route

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes option - must cross the Main Western railway line three times, not twice, as with the green and purple

options. Costing must allow for a crossing of the Zig Zag Railway alignment to Newnes Junction. The Newnes

Junction must also cross by major bridging and viaducts the Farmers Creek Valley, a drinking water supply where

best engineering practice will be required. It would be appropriate to pass the proposed corridor below the dam

wall to avoid impacts and risks to the water supplies. State Mine Creek and Dargan Creek are two other deep

valleys to cross.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

A Newnes route is 100 metres higher than Mount Victoria and will have greater snow and ice problems. The black

ice problem at the 40 Bends occurs at 850 metres, an elevation at least 300 metres lower in elevation

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness The bypass options all have significant ecological impacts upon matters of national and state heritage significance

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Tunnel option would have least impact on environment. It would avoid the World Heritage Area and most

endangered ecological communities, except for a small section of shale forest community are the bottom of the

escarpment, which is already fragmented at that point by the existing Highway.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The Colong Foundation acknowledges that the purple corridor will scar the Western Escarpment and degrade

significant natural values.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes option - could have 30% more environmental impacts, due to its length alone, unless the environment is

inferior.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes option - biological values are understated by Cardno. Attachment 1 to this submission outlines the

botanical and ecological significance of Newnes Plateau.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Woodlands and swamps on Newnes Plateau represent the coldest and highest development of native vegetation

in the Sydney Basin. The vegetation mapping in the Cardno report presents the area’s vegetation as if it is identical

to other lower sandstone regions, which is incorrect. A more accurate range of ecological communities affected by

the proposed corridor is shown in Figure 1 in this submission (source DECC, 2006).

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Cardno's report Figure 9.7 (pg 50) has generalised the ecological communities mapping. The generalisation, in this

case, did not remove the line work for the ecological community types, enabling the generalisation of vegetation

community data to be identified. Turning 60 ecological communities into 20 non-endangered communities reduces

by two thirds the information (knowledge content) of the map. The generalised map supports the “there’s nothing

there” view and makes the vegetation appear uniform; in this case as an ugly uniform pink. The “pinko blob”

contains Sydney Montane Dry Sclerophyll Forest, true, but it is misleading. The mapping greatly downplays the

floristic diversity of Newnes Plateau and the adjoining Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area, which of

course is also mostly “pinko blob” under this generalised vegetation classification.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The following ecological forest communities are located within the Sydney Montane Dry Sclerophyll Forest on top

of Newnes Plateau, and would be traversed by the Newnes corridor, include: Sandstone Slopes Sydney

Peppermint Shrubby Forest; Newnes Plateau Narrow!leaved Peppermint – Silvertop Ash Layered Open Forest;

Sandstone Plateau and Ridge Scribbly Gum – Silvertop Ash Scrubby Woodland; Exposed Blue Mountains Sydney

Peppermint – Silvertop Ash Scrubby Woodland; Newnes Plateau Gum Hollows variant: Brittle Gum – Mountain

Gum, Scribbly Gum – Snow Gum; Newnes Plateau Narrow!leaved Peppermint – Mountain Gum – Brown

Stringybark Layered Forest.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The following ecological heath communities located within the Sydney Montane Heath community on top of

Newnes Plateau, and likely to be traversed by the Newnes corridor, include: Pagoda Rock Sparse Shrubland;

Sandstone Plateaux Tea Tree – Dawrf Sheoak ! Banksia Rocky Heath; Newnes Plateau Tea Tree – Banksia –

Mallee Heath; Newnes Plateau Dwarf Sheoak – Banksia Heath; Newnes Plateau Shrub Swamp; Newnes Plateau

Hanging Swamp.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Cardno mapped only one of the EEC on Newnes Plateau likely to be traversed by the proposed corridor (ie

Newnes Plateau Shrub Swamps). This EEC listed under the EPBC Act for the Plateau is more extensively mapped

as the Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone EEC. It is affected by the proposed corridor. The Colong

Foundation advised Cardno and SKM of the presence of this community, and again this understatement of the

extent of the EEC downplays the importance of Newnes Plateau to conservation. The Temperate Highland Peat

Swamps on Sandstone EEC also contains Newnes Plateau Hanging Swamps and Newnes Plateau Snow Gum

Hollow Wooded Swampy Heath, in addition to the Newnes Plateau Shrub Swamps (which is also listed as an EEC

under the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act, 1995). See Figure 2 in this submission (source DECC,

2006).

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The vegetation assessment by Cardno would be appropriate for broad regional to state scale strategic analysis.

Such scale of mapping are not the most helpful in mapping issues for a bypass corridor identification. It could be

concluded that the broadscale vegetation mapping was presented to help create the impression that “nothing is

there” on Newnes Plateau and the Darling Causeway.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes Plateau has more of an intact natural vegetation of greater biological integrity relative to the wildlife

corridors in Hartley Valley. Vegetation clearing for the Hartley Valley options would only be a fraction of the 70

hectares of vegetation that would need to be cleared for the Newnes proposed option. Refer to the unpublished

report by the Department of Environment and Climate Change entitled ‘Gardens of Stone Stage Two Proposal –

State Conservation Areas and Park Extensions – Assessment Report’, 2006. Note the Department accepts as

erroneous and excessive the disturbance mapping in that report. The mapping incorrectly identified areas of

NPWS identified wilderness as highly disturbed and also there were no obvious difference between areas identified

as highly disturbed and the adjoining areas of national park. Both Cardno and SKM are put on notice not to use

this discredited disturbance mapping data to justify its road proposal. Cardno and SKM should also note that the

DECC 2006 report on the ‘Vegetation of the Western Blue Mountains’ prepared for the Hawkesbury-Nepean

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The reservation of Newnes Plateau for conservation has been sought since 1934. The Colong Foundation

provided copies of the 2005 Gardens of Stone reserve proposal to both consultants, but neither chose to make any

reference to it. It is a common courtesy to acknowledge the community’s long standing interest in the conservation

of the Plateau. Elements of the Gardens of Stone reserve are subject to ongoing investigation for reservation by

the NSW Department of Environment and Climate Change. While not all the lands are earmarked for addition to

national parks, all are set aside for some level of nature and heritage conservation. It is through these lands that

the SKM green and red options, and the Newnes Plateau option shall pass.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Cardno and SKM present very scant consideration by of the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area. At the

very least both consultants should have outlined the World Heritage values and explicitly stated intentions to avoid

these values, or at this stage, inform that the proposal may be a controlled action under the EPBC Act.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

In view of the fact that all options, except the SKM orange option are likely to impose on “matters of National

Environmental Significance” referral of proposal is almost inevitable. The consultant reports should have explained

in detail the consequences of this referral contingency to assist the public in understanding the EPBC

environmental impact assessment process.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Colong Foundation for Wilderness does not support the proposed Mount Victoria bypass options by either SKM or

Cardno. None represent ecologically sustainable development, prudent use of public funds or the best transport

solution for regional transport needs.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

An upgrade of the existing highway does not forego future options. It enables further consideration of options for

this difficult road. It would also enable further consideration in light of the soon-to-be-released Central West

Transport Needs Study. By approaching this road problem from a regional context, other better solutions may

present themselves.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness The Colong Foundation acknowledges that the purple corridor will degrade significant heritage values.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness Orange, green, red and Newnes corridors are unacceptable due to excessive heritage impacts

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

This road project must be decided by in a rational, considered and transparent manner, after receipt of

independent advice and following public comment and review. It would be inappropriate for the RTA to determine a

final option based on poorly understood view of political support for the Bells Line of Road (BLoR). From a political

viewpoint, adoption by the RTA of the Newnes option could be unwise. It could be seen as strong evidence for the

NSW Government (whatever its future political makeup) to restructure the RTA to make it more accountable to

Government.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The Blue Mountains community has a right to be extensively consulted on any significant action that would

increase road freight on Great Western Highway, and on any alternatives that could avoid this increase in heavy

traffic (eg any recommendations flowing from the Central West Transport Needs Study). The Mountains community

will oppose increased road freight. Heavy traffic could potentially grow to very high levels of perhaps an additional

4,000 trucks per day, if all proposed Central West intermodal container terminals are built.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

SKM and Cardno used an in house “Black Box” to identify routes, which have different scales of resolution, criteria

and methodologies. These processes did not overlap. The RTA and the consultants have not properly explained to

the community how route selection will be integrated into decision-making processes. The RTA will select the

options for further consideration and the next report will present the preferred option. The “Black Box” mumbojumbo

may suit political needs, as it hides justification logic well, especially if these methodological processes are

copyright to the consultants.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Noting the long lead time for the upgrade, there is an opportunity to suspend the review of public submissions until

the Central West Transport Needs Study report is released for exhibition. At that time the bypass report and any

further options should be considered.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Colong Foundation recommends an extension of the current exhibition processes in relation to the RTA’s SKM and

Cardno consultant’s reports of three months, and an appropriate rescheduling of the bypass program is requested.

This would ensure: a) the alternative corridor and Blackheath issues receive satisfactory consideration; b) the

public can be informed by the Central West Transport Needs Study; and c) a 26m Bdoubles will remain banned in

the City of the Blue Mountains, and d) all affected communities are consulted and advised of the consequences of

any Mount Victoria-River Lett Hill Bypass.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Until the construction of the Mount Victoria tunnel and regrading of the River Lett Hill can be economically justified

for truck transport, the safety of the Great Western Highway should be improved immediately as an interim

measure.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The bypass options will disrupt local and regional communities and all Mountain communities would be significantly

affected by a large increase in heavy vehicle traffic if any one of the proposals were built

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness Tunnel option would impact on very few new residents currently unaffected by the existing highway

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The Colong Foundation acknowledges that the purple corridor will have significant impacts on some residents in

the Hartley Valley, but not fragment the community nearly as much the green and red corridor options that pass

closer to the Valley’s centre.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness Orange, green, red and Newnes corridors are unacceptable due to excessive social impacts

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Newnes option - social impacts are understated by Cardno. The Cardno report reveals in figure 9.10 that the

Newnes option will bisect Bell village, which is a settlement with a major town density (50–100 blocks/square km).

According to this figure, the Hartley Valley apparently has two small areas with half the lot density of Bell village.

The figure also reveals Dargan, Newnes Junction and Clarence have larger areas with lot densities equivalent to

those in Hartley Valley in two localities. The Marangaroo Valley, however, also has high residence densities, at

least equal to lot densities of a small town (see Figure 9.11- residences and work place locations). The prison also

has a lot of people. The claim by Cardno (pg 198, last paragraph) that the Newnes option will have a lower social

impact, relative to the SKM options, is contradicted by the evidence on Figure 9.10, pg 59 and Figure 9.11, pg 60,

especially since the Newnes corridor proposal is located on the Chiffley Road side of the railway alignment. When

the residents of the Marrangaroo Valley are considered, Figure 9.11 indicates that more resident localities would be potentially affected 118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Orange corridor - a minimal upgrade of the existing highway is the optimal short term solution because all other

options do not improve travel times or user travel costs by more than 5% relative to the existing condition.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

The Colong Foundation's proposed amended orange corridor (tunnel) being the shortest option, would have the

greatest reductions in travel time and travel cost. It is the only option that avoids loss of traffic to the dangerous

Bells Line of Road.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Given the very marginal benefits of all options in regard to travel time and travel cost savings (less than 5%) and

no benefit to road safety if the BLoR is increasingly used due to the bypass construction, the justification for any

road bypass seems primarily for heavy freight. The proposals should examine heavy freight transport issues in

more detail.

118 Colong Foundation for

Wilderness

Other options that should be considered for freight include serving the southern part of the Central West by a

southern state road route that joins with the Hume Highway. Such a truck route, though longer, leads road freight

directly to Port Botany, on a freeway standard road for its entire length. Similarly, Golden Highway to the north

needs to be more fully explored, for the northern half of the Central West.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Green corridor – would impact established tourist business at the Comet Inn and remnant workings of Hartley Vale

shale mining and oil refining business.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Red corridor traverses the course of Butler’s Creek and flat land below foothills of Mount York. This is swampy

land. Except for dams built by Mr Laurence O’Connell, it would become a floodplain annually. If a highway were

constructed higher on foothills of Mount York it would encounter problems with the many watercourses. Dealing

with this natural phenomenon would be excessively costly.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch) Purple corridor – would be plagued by fogs and black ice that already make 40 Bends a traffic accident black area.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Purple corridor – would have significant impact on Dargan’s Creek and other tributaries of the River Lett which

form part of the Warragamba Catchment area. It would destroy the Hartley Vale Road which follows Bell’s 1824

descent into the Valley.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Hartley Valley was identified by the National Trust of Australia (NSW) in 1986 as an historic area so signficant it

should be listed as a Landscape Conservation Area.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Hartley Valley was sighted in 1813 by Blaxland, Wentworth and Lawson. Their crossing led to opening up of

western plains. It is the Cradle of the West. Hartley Valley contains an uninterrupted historical record of nonindigenous

heritage and invaluable remnants of indigenous heritage for an unquantified period of pre-colonial

settlement. A 4-lane highway through the Valley would impact severly on heritage items and mar the overall

ambience of this historic Valley.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

RTA is aware of the pinch point on Great Western Highway between Harp of Erin and Ambermere and is aware of,

and honours, the provisions of the Burra Charter (Australian adoption of ICOMOS). The pinch point precludes

widening of the Great Western Highway on its historic line

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Red corridor – a deviation at eastern end of the red route would almost certainly destroy archaeological site of

convict stockade and troop barracks at foot of Victoria Pass identified by the RTA.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Green corridor - In fields opposite Collitts Inn there are sites of indigenous heritage, including tool sharpening stone

and area for making stone tools. Archaeological site of shale mining industry would be destroyed.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch) Soldiers barracks at foot of Mount York has not been fully explored as an archaeological site.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

All descents of the eastern escarpment into Hartley Valley are of historic significance, as are various routes

through the Valley of explorers and surveyors.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Oil bearing shale was identified in Hartley Vale as early as 1825. The Hartley Vale shale oil remnants are of

industrial historic and tourist importance.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Aboriginal hand-painting cave has been located in the vicinity of Palmers Gully north of Mount York. Another

Aboriginal hand-painting cave is located on escarpment of Mount Clarence. Significant indigenous artefacts have

been located across the Valley floor. Hyde Park on the River Lett is an identified indigenous site. The eastern

escarpment has not been fully explored by locals or members of the Councils of the Wiradjuri, Gundangurra or

Dharug peoples for further indigenous sites.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch) Green and purple corridors – would impact on the indigenous, farming and industrial heritage of Hartley Vale.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

From the point at which the converge, the red, green or purple corridors would have a significant deleterious

impact on Blackman-Merrick Cemetery and archaeological site of the Merrick ‘Rosedale’. Where these corridors

would rejoin Great Western Highway a 4-lane highway with a seagull junction would impact on Fernhill.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch) It may be that no final decision should be made until the Central West Transport Needs Study is completed.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Red corridor is located in an area similar to Route G considered in the 1999 RTA study. Route G bisected Little

Hartley between Great Western Highway and the course of Butler's Creek. It was considered unsuitable by RTA

because of impact on the landscape as viewed from historic Victoria Pass and from Mount York and on the

relationship to the historic inns.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

Green corridor – would impact on outlook from State Heritage Register listed Collitts Inn and would impact on

tranquillity of environment near Collitts Inn and Mount York Cemetery

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch) Lawson’s and Lockyer’s lines are popular bushwalking tracks and should not be disturbed.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

A 4-lane highway anywhere within the orange, red, green or purple corridors, and particularly towards the western

end where the corridors come together, would impact on the amenity of the rural residential subdivisions.

119 National Trust NSW

(Lithgow Branch)

A 3-lane highway down some point of the Hartley Valley escarpment, with 4 lanes across the valley floor and

another ascent in the vicinity of Boxes Track can only be a band-aid short-term solution to the transport needs from

Sydney to the West. It could not provide a route for B-doubles, or a safe efficient freight transport road to the

Western Plains. A short-term solution would damage the historically rich Hartley Valley for all time.

155 Individual Hartley Valley is truly one of the most magical places in NSW. I would not like to see it spoilt by highway running

through centre of it.

168 Individual

I wrote to Bob Debus during election when bypass first announced given that I was concerned it would affect my

property. Bob Debus advised that he was 98% sure there was no chance of highway coming through my way. I

supported Bob Debus when he announced that highway would not go through Mount Victoria

177 Individual

I propose you watch the video at this link: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7065205277695921912 and

ask yourself: 'why am I participating? Why do I sacrifice the lifeblood of my land for benefit of corporate profits?

What can bring about a change in my consciousness?' Why consider building a new highway when oil is running

out and money is better invested in solar energy and trains.

189 Individual

A highway through Hartley Valley is an environmental shame and disaster on many levels. Such a unique, special

and beautiful valley bountiful with history and abounding with magnificent walking, birds and rural property and

peace. Feels like a total waste of a beautiful space and should not be destroyed or tampered with.

206 Individual Keep in mind environmental and social impacts (the real cost of these impacts, eg CO2 emissions, amount of

productive land required to build roads, cost of shipping goods via road vs rail)

206 Individual Heavy bulk freight ought to be transported by rail/ship and not trucks. Please invest in necessary infrastructure that

is future proof.

227 Individual With current global situation it would be great to see Australia finally become a leader in the world by supporting

sustainable living, build railways not road ways. Remember this is just not now that we are thinking about

246 Individual I am totally opposed to any Great Western Highway deviation through historic Hartley Valley. There would be no

long term benefit to address the needs of the West. Have a vision for our future and respect our past Mr Debus.

246 Individual

A road across Newnes Plateau is the only sensible way to go in this carbon constrained world. The early explorers

were only successful crossing the Blue Mountains when they followed the ridges. Let us for once learn from our

past.

246 Individual A Great Western Highway deviation through Hartley Valley would totally divide and destroy one of our historic

gems.

288 Individual If RTA builds highway through Hartley, the existing highway will still be used by local residents. You then end up

with 2 highways through Hartley - this does not seem a sensible solution.

357 Individual Don't build the highway

361 Individual

The Great Western Highway is already 4 lanes for approximately 25km; it would be a total waste of public money

to construct completely new road for 41km. The time it would take to build the Great Western Highway option

would only be one quarter of that of the Newnes option.

361 Individual

I am totally against the northern route that would take the new road through Newnes Platea area via Bell. The

people of Hartley have not taken into account their fellow business associates and neighbours who rely on traffic

through the Great Western Highway corridor for the very survival of their businesses.

361 Individual When the majority of people in Hartley built their homes a new highway was already in the pipeline, so why

complain now when you knew way back then?

403 Individual I do not support the proposed change to Great Western Highway. The highway can be upgraded in situ to avoid

any disruption to historic Hartley Valley or environmentally sensitive pagoda country of the Newnes Plateau.

403 Individual We do not need bigger roads in NSW; we need rail infrastructure and less CO2 producing traffic

423 Individual Purple corridor - while not as populated as other corridors, it contains farmed properties that have been farmed by

generations of the same family and used in most cases as the only source of income.

423 Individual Purple corridor - there are a number of trees that were planted over a century ago

423 Individual Purple corridor - a highway would cover the creek which in turn will become polluted. It is the only source of

drinking water for residents and their livestock along Monkey Creek and River Lett

423 Individual Purple corridor - there are a number of significant heritage buildings

423 Individual

If a highway goes through the valley not only the tranquility will be lost, but also the valley's heritage and farming

communities. These farmers have survived depression, drought, floods and stayed on the land where many others

sold out and subdivided

424 Individual As an alternative why not upgrade the existing Great Western Highway and put a tunnel under Mount Victoria to

Hartley Valley

424 Individual

A highway through Newnes Plateau would pose a threat to flora and fauna species not found in neighbouring

National Parks because of differences in ecosystems, topogrpaphy and elevation. A highway would also have

negative environmentals impacts on the southern end of Newnes Plateau with its shrub swamps, heath land and

scenic sandstone pagoda formations

424 Individual

I spent many years bushwalking and canyoning in Newnes Plateau area. It is a beautiful area with its diversity of

flora (eg Wolgan Snowgums), fauna and landscapes. Australia cannot afford to degrade its wilderness any further

since so much has already been lost

424 Individual

Please reject the Newnes corridor option. A new highway would adversely affect the residents at Darling

Causeway, Bell, Dargan, Newnes Junction and Marrangaroo through an increase in traffic levels and accidents

and an increase in noise and pollution

425 Individual

The RTA's November community update points out that a significant challenge to identifying corridors was the

issue of getting into valley due to topography of area. All of the studies seem to consider that the only response to

this issue is a surface road along one of the identified corridors. In Adelaide some years ago, a similar problem -

how to get down from the Mount Lofty Ranges into Adelaide - when building the Sth East Freeway, was solved by

a relatively short and straight tunnel. The tunnel bypassed several difficult bends, including the notorious "Devils

Elbow" hairpin, scene of regular truck accidents. The shorter tunnel route provided reasonable gradients for all

traffic. A similar tunnel from Mount Victoria into the Hartley valley could then pick up the existing highway

alignment near the bottom of Victoria Pass. I would expect such a tunnel to be worth further study as a cost

competitive alternative to the surface corridors already identified.

425 Individual Tunnel option would offer substantial environmental benefits compared to surface roads.

425 Individual Tunnel option would offer substantial heritage benefits compared to surface roads.

426 Individual Newnes corridor option would greatly reduce my travel time to work. I support this option

427 Individual A tunnel along existing Great Western Highway corridor woule be cheaper than a road over Newnes Plateau and

at least economically competitive with Hartley Vale alternatives

427 Individual Tunnel option - avoids the enormous cost overruns reflected by the very difficult terrain traversed in all five options

427 Individual Tunnel option - no adverse impacts on tourism

427 Individual

I request that a tunnel be added to the other 5 options under consideraton, fully addressed and publicly displayed

in the same way the 5 corridors have been and then adopted. If the RTA does not intend to add a tunnel to its

options, fully assess it and make a full report to the community, then I am entitled to a response from the RTA

setting out the reasons why the option will not be considered.

427 Individual

It is unlikely the RTA will get consensus among the various groups for an above-ground route. I'm amazed the RTA

has not already intervened with an obvious engineering solution - a tunnel. A tunnel starting somewhere near

Browntown Oval passing under Mount Victoria, through the escarpment and onto the existing highway easement at

Hartley is more than technically feasible and will create less damage and disruption during the construction period.

427 Individual If infrastructure under consideration was a mine, railway, sewerage conduit or hydro-electric facility and not

roadwork, there would be no question that a tunnel would be adopted

427 Individual Tunnel option - Vehicles would not divert down the Bells Line of Road, thereby adding to the road toll, for which this

road is renowned, and affecting the Berambing-Kurrajong Heights communities, who have not been consulted

427 Individual Tunnel option - maximises use of existing highway in Hartley Valley and from south Bowenfels to Marrangaroo

427 Individual All of the corridor options will adversely impact on the Blue Mountains World Heritage Area and create further

damage to the western escarpment northwest of Mount Victoria

427 Individual

Tunnel option - Newnes Plateau native vegetation including upland swamps would not be bulldozed and cleared

during construction; nationally endangered ecological communities and threatended and regionally significant

flora/fauna of western escarpment would be safe; major impacts on wildlife corridors from all five options would be

avoided; impact on conservation areas including Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area would be avoided.

427 Individual Tunnel option - Lithgow's water supply - the Farmers Creek water storage - would not be jeopardised by the

Newnes option during construction and subsequently by contaminated road runoff and sediment

427 Individual Tunnel option - Gardens of Stone Stage 2 reserve proposal would not be devalued by fearsome sandstone

cuttings up to 65 metre deep and ugly long ramps onto the Newnes Plateau

427 Individual All of the corridor options have unacceptable social and environmental repercussions and should be rejected

427 Individual Tunnel option - no new impacts on Bell, Dargan, Newnes, Clarence communities from a Newnes Plateau option or

on Hartley Valley from the other corridors.

427 Individual Tunnel option - no adverse impacts on recreational opportunities

427 Individual Tunnel option - local traffic between Lithgow, Blue Mountains' towns and villages and Oberon-Jenolan would boost

the low traffic volumes expected by this scheme and help justify the major construction

428 Individual

The financial viability of the NSW Government is well known. In the present economic climate, unsustainable

infrastructure investment as a joint Federal/State venture, can be seen as a stop gap measure. As a tax payer I am

appalled at such short sighted expenditure.

428 Individual

We have over the past ten years developed a new industry on our property. We have over 800 Herbaceous Peony

plants and have been wholesaling them to various Sydney companies including the top Florist Grandiflora at Pott's

Point. This new initiative has been costly in terms of labour, fencing and purchasing root stock.

428 Individual White's Creek is an important watercourse for River Lett. Roadworks undertaken in the area would be detrimental

to the catchment area.

428 Individual Trucks are not taxed according to the damage they cause to road surfaces. It is imperative that this problem be

addressed so a sustainable, realistic tax can be implemented that may move freight to rail.

428 Individual

Our property as well as Fernhill and the area known as Old Bowenfels has great historical significance. Our

property has heritage listing and historical significance as an example of the earliest settlement in the area.

Considerable historic research has been undertaken in the last two years. We have improved all facets of the

property to ensure it remains an historically important, sustainable record of the early European settlement.

428 Individual

We feel this study should be undertaken in conjunction with the Department of Infrastructure as well as State Rail.

RTA have a vested interest in ensuring that the road infrastructure is upgraded at the expense of rail and thus no

real alternatives to road will be considered.

428 Individual The Forty Bends highway area has already undergone considerable upgrade in 1989. At that time two of our dams

were cracked by the dynamite. Despite application, no reimbursment was forthcoming.

428 Individual

Any long term proposals place properties in a limbo whereby maintaining and development of the property is not

viable. This would be a tragedy for this area as both Fernhill and Forty Bends have invested considerable money in

restoration and pasture improvement.

428 Individual

The area of Great Western Highway at Leura to Lawson has had years of roadworks and inevitably will continue to

have years of further disruption. Compounding the problem by working on the new proposed corridor will lead to a

cumulative traffic problem.

428 Individual

The subdivision undertaken known as Daintree Estate was poorly planned and is proving an environmental liability.

The RTA and Lithgow Council at that time of subdivision, failed in address the problem of access roads. Part of the

historic area of our property underwent considerable damage due to the unauthorized building of a driveway over

our property.

428 Individual The Forty Bends area can be seen from Hassan's Walls Lookout. It features on a number of early postcards

displaying the natural beauty of the area. Constructing another highway corridor will be destructive to this vista.

428 Individual

I have recently returned from Europe where I investigated and filmed transport options, attended lectures in Italy,

Austria and Germany on transport options and viewed first hand transport trends in England, Italy, Spain, France

and Germany. My broad impression is that road transport for goods and private journeys is seen as the least

economic and carries the greatest environmental burden. To this end London has successfully embraced the

congestion tax, Italy is installing electric stations for cars and pint sized buses, France is subsidizing bike and

electric car hiring and Germany has put premium costs on license holders. Europe has invested in rail, canal and

sea transport for freight and the economic advantages are considerable. The environmental savings of alternatives

to road transport, have gained global acceptance. European countries have for some years, embraced the reality

of the small car using alternative fuels. America and Australia have been reticent to take this alternative and are

being propped up in the short term by government funds that should be going into sustainable transport. These

companies have redundant infrastructure and appear no match for their European and Asian competitors.

428 Individual

Blue Mountains residents are eager to have a sustainable transport system reliant on rail. (Blue Mountains

Environment Summit 2008). The expansion of highway infrastructure is unsustainable and appears to contravene

State and Federal Laws. Considering these proposals independently of consideration of rail transport is

unacceptable.

428 Individual

Lithgow has the potential to be an environmental leader, using the natural resources and environment to give a

sustainable alternative to the transport problem. An expansion of the rail system to allow most freight to use rail

would negate the need for an alternative route. Smart cars and two seater electric cars could use the train system

for journeys from Lithgow to Mount Victoria, Katoomba etc. The potential of Delta to provide Electric bus and car

fueling stations appears feasible.

429 Individual

Our property has in its entirety been proclaimed a Wildlife Refuge under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974

on 20 April 1994. Our house is not marked on the corridor display. On commencement of field studies we would

request to be involved in any proposed route planning concerning our property.

430 Individual

An important advantage of rail upgrading is that of the energy sources involved; rail uses electricity which can be

produced by environmentally friendly means and this source of energy is not obviously available to heavy road

transport.

430 Individual

Much of the rail route from Penrith to Lithgow allows for a third railway track to be laid at a minimal cost. Admittedly

there are a few difficult spots but these could be overcom at a fraction of the cost of all the suggested corridor

options.

430 Individual

If the road is to be upgraded I am in favour of a tunnel option for the Mount Victoria bypass. This option appears to

be superior on every count - economy, low impact on environment, local traffic interference and impact on local

water supplies

430 Individual Decision to upgrade highway should be made on the basis of what is best for the country as a whole

430 Individual

I'm concerned at apparent neglect of upgrading railway line to the west in favour of more heavy transport on our

highway. The railway is not being used to its full capacity. The reasons for this are unclear though it would appear

to be more economic and safer to move heavy loads by rail than road.

431 Individual Newnes corridor - the higher cost of $900 million for of a Newnes Plateau option is totally unnecessary and

unacceptable to me, when other options are cheaper.

431 Individual

I believe a tunnel option under Mount Victoria connecting with the existing corridor would cost less than the $900

million Newnes Plateau option, would have far fewer social or environmental impacts, and should be the RTA's

preferred option.

431 Individual

I cannot possibly see any positive economic, social or tourism benefits for Lithgow, Hartley, Hampton, Jenolan

Caves or Oberon of a Newnes Plateau option which will bypass these areas. It will negatively affect future

economic growth, especially tourism on which these areas are heavily reliant.

431 Individual

Any Newnes Plateau Route will largely be above 1150 metres in altitude - which is much higher than any of the

existing or proposed corridors. It is also higher than the usual fog, snow and ice 'black-spots' of Mount Lambie,

Yetholme, Cherry Tree Hill, and Oberon. A Newnes Plateau Route is therefore far more likely to be affected by

accidents, delays and highway closures due to fog, drizzle, snow and ice.

431 Individual

Newnes Plateau option will be more costly to construct and maintain in the long term due to mine subsidence from

the old State Mine and Cobar Park Mine workings and Clarence Colliery workings at the eastern end of the

corridor, and the old Fernbrook Colliery and current Springvale Colliery long wall mine workings near Marrangaroo.

431 Individual

Newnes Plateau is the source of Farmers Creek, Lithgow's major drinking water supply. A new highway poses a

significant threat to Lithgow's water supply not only during construction but if there were a chemical spill, as

occurred at the base of Mount Victoria Pass in 2003, and the steep terrain and short distance between the

proposed route and Farmers Creek Dam will make any such spill very difficult to contain before it enters Lithgows

drinking water supply.

431 Individual

Newnes Plateau is a priceless tourism asset of magnificent natural, scientific, educational and environmental

value. It is part of the Gardens of Stone National Park proposal Stage 2, and is then eligible for inclusion in the

Greater Blue Mountains World

431 Individual

It upsets me that the Hartley residents have suddenly discovered they no longer want the Great Western Highway,

despite the fact it has existed in the Hartley Valley for more than 150 years and are pushing it towards villages of

Bell, Dargan and Clarence, not to mention Marrangaroo and Tunnel Hill. Similarly the residents of Kurrajong,

Berambing, Bilpin, and Mount Tomah do not appear to have been consulted, yet many people regard a Newnes

Plateau Route as a precursor to an eventual Bells Line Expressway. I do hope that the RTA is giving equal weight

to the genuine concerns of residents from these villages, many of whom purchased land in undisturbed bushland

areas, and not disturbed agricultural land with a highway running through it like Hartley, precisely because they

were seeking a peaceful bushland ambience unaffected by highway noise.

431 Individual

My family has owned land in the area for 40 years. On two prior occasions the RTA has compulsorily acquired

portions of our land to widen the Great Western Highway. As a result our land has reduced in size and the RTA

only paid us a pittance for the acres lost. The RTA took the only area of our land that had a spring to feed a dam,

so consequently we now no longer have enough water. The house my father built well back on the block to avoid

highway noise is now twice as close to the highway, and the traffic noise gets steadily worse every year. I consider

that the RTA has already greatly devalued our property by these two previous widenings of the Western Highway

widening, and that a Newnes Plateau option will destroy our property values altogether.

431 Individual

I believe bypassing all traffic from the Bells Line of Road and Great Western Highway past Lithgow will turn Tunnel

Hill into a Petrol Station Alley and fast food chain hub. This is because the petrol stations and likes of MacDonalds,

KFC, Red Rooster who will lose the passing trade in Lithgow will look to relocate - and Tunnel Hill is the most likely

area. This will totally destroy the peaceful bushland rural ambience we have spent 40 years creating. It will totally

ruin our lifestyle, our quality of life, our amenity, our environment, our hopes and our dreams for the future.

431 Individual

Newnes Plateau Route fails to meet the RTA's main objective of reducing traffic on Mount Victoria Pass and

through Mount Victoria township. All local traffic from Lithgow heading east will still use the Great Western Highway

and/or Browns Gap Road because it will be shorter and quicker. All traffic heading east or west from Hartley,

Hampton, Jenolan Caves or Oberon won't use a Newnes Plateau route either.

432 Individual We need to protect the habitat of the long nected Australian freshwater turtles

432 Individual Highway upgrade would result in increased noise from passing vehicles

433 Individual Widening the existing highway would be a disaster for the businesses that fall in the orange corridor

433 Individual

Historic properties listed at both state and local levels line both sides of the existing highway, which forms the basis

of the orange corridor. Widening the current highway would be a disaster for the historic mountain village of Mount

Victoria

433 Individual Bob Debus stated the red and orange corridors are invalid. Why are we still commenting on corridors that have

been invalidated?

434 Individual RTA should consider going along the Bells Line of Road instead of the Darling Causeway

434 Individual All major truck depots in Sydney should be moved to Richmond

435 Individual Business impacts on Lithgow because of reduced traffic

435 Individual Newnes option - potential for easier/reduced grades onto the Plateau than other proposed corridors

435 Individual Purple corridor - mining subsidence

number Individual / organisation Summary of comment

435 Individual Catchment issues at Farmers Creek

435 Individual When is construction proposed? What is happening with Katoomba/Mount Victoria link?

435 Individual Avoid army demolition range at Marrangaroo

435 Individual Newnes option avoids subdivision in Little Hartley; reduced private property resumptions

436 Individual

My main concern is that the RTA is offering no indication or charter that there is any interest and process for the

RTA to independently and objectively recognise, assess and consider implementing any community input. As a

start, please provide one example anywhere across the Great Western Highway widening project under Auslink 1

or Auslink 2 where community input has ended up altering the final design outcome of the RTA’s highway plan.

437 Individual

Issues with proposal: pushback from residents of Mount Victoria and Lithgow. Though a reminder that other towns

that have been bypassed (ie Goulburn, Berrima) have boomed as a result. Glenbrook can only be described a a

huge success in 'get up and go'.

437 Individual

Suggested solution: engineer a 2x2 lane bypass of Mount Victoria; take the bypass to Bells Line of Road; engineer

a 2x2 lane highway along the Newnes corridor (which contains a great deal of Crown land) bringing the new road

onto the Great Western Highway between Lithgow Correctional Centre and the Mudgee turn off.

438 Individual Newnes corridor - concerned about cost blow out associated with difficult terrain

438 Individual Orange corridor - a 2.5km tunnel under Mount Victoria would emerge halfway down Victoria Pass thereby reducing

the steep grade

438 Individual Green corridor - this would cause irreversible damage to environmental values including pagoda areas

438 Individual Red corridor - am concerned about impact on and loss of native vegetation in Little Hartley/Hartley Vale area. This

vegetation represents important transition habitat between the sandstone escarpment and the Coxs River

438 Individual Newnes corridor - consultation with Bilpin/Kurrajong/Richmond regarding additional traffic that would use Bells Line

of Road

438 Individual Green corridor - would permanently destroy the scenic, cultural and historic values of Hartley Vale

438 Individual Orange corridor - best option for minimising environment, social and cultural impacts

438 Individual Purple corridor - irreversible damage to environmental, scenic and heritage values in the historic Hartley Vale area

438 Individual Orange and red corridors - expanding the highway through the urban area on the north side of Mount Victoria, as

indicated by width of the corridor, would destroy the town of Mount Victoria

438 Individual

Green corridor - consider future traffic models that account for fuel price increases; also the central west transport

route options via Newcastle and Goulburn that could negate the need for a new alignment of Great Western

Highway

439 Individual Orange corridor - a tunnel from Soldiers Pinch to base of Victoria Pass should be seriously considered to minimise

impacts. Cost should not be a reason to exclude this

439 Individual Green corridor - irreversible damage to a landscape of similar environmental values as the adjoining World

Heritage area

439 Individual Strongly favour improving the existing corridor over the other options

439 Individual Green corridor - noise impact on Mount Victoria north and irreversible damage to Hartley Vale

439 Individual Red corridor - unacceptable social impacts

439 Individual Purple corridor - irreversible damage to environmental, aesthetic/scenic, tourism and social values

440 Individual We object to the Newnes Plateau corridor due to the negative social and environmental impacts it will have

441 Individual Newnes corridor - twice as expensive as Hartley Valley routes

441 Individual Newnes corridor - totally bypassing Lithgow would have negative economic impacts

441 Individual Newnes corridor - not safer as would lead to more traffic on Bells Line of Road (which already has bad safety

record)

441 Individual Newnes corridor - snow/ice/fog is an issue because of higher altitude

441 Individual Strongly object to Newnes Plateau corridor - the Plateau is an area of largely intact vegetation, containing rare or

threatened plant and animal species, some of which do not occur in the adjoining National Parks

441 Individual Strongly object to Newnes Plateau corridor - route would adversely affect residents of Bell, Dargan, Newnes

Junction, Clarence and Marrangaroo

441 Individual Local residents do not want increased truck traffic across the Blue Mountains

441 Individual Newnes corridor - little saving in travel time

442 Individual

Can we be assured there will be no bad planning regarding truck stops, which hopefully will be positioned away

from people's homes, unlike the case with Mount Victoria residents who have suffered from noise pollution outside

their gates all day/night

443 Individual Newnes corridor - twice as expensive as Hartley Valley routes

443 Individual Newnes corridor - totally bypassing Lithgow would have negative economic impacts

443 Individual Newnes corridor - not safer as would lead to more traffic on Bells Line of Road (which already has bad safety

record)

443 Individual Newnes corridor - snow/ice/fog is an issue because of higher altitude

443 Individual Strongly object to Newnes Plateau corridor - the Plateau is an area of largely intact vegetation, containing rare or

threatened plant and animal species, some of which do not occur in the adjoining National Parks

443 Individual Strongly object to Newnes Plateau corridor - route would adversely affect residents of Bell, Dargan, Newnes

Junction, Clarence and Marrangaroo

443 Individual Local residents do not want increased truck traffic across the Blue Mountains

443 Individual Newnes corridor - little saving in travel time

444 Individual

A road tunnel from the end of the M4 at Emu Plains under the entire Blue Mountains to emerge at Hartley would

resolve issues of grades, numerous 40km school zones, availability of sand from mining for the construction

industry, proposed Gardens of Stone National Park Stage 2, preservation of Newnes Plateau, practicalities of

increased rail line for freight

444 Individual The above proposed tunnel would actually be higher at its centre than at the ends thus helping with many safety

and drainage issues. I suspect though there would be other problems to resolve, being cost, ventilation and safety

445 Individual Object to all proposed corridors - waste of taxpayers' money being diverted to unsustainable and uneconomical

profit-driven private interests

445 Individual Object to all proposed corridors - significant environmental impacts

445 Individual Object to all proposed corridors - significant pre- and post-European heritage impacts

445 Individual Project appears to have been predetermined by State/Federal governments, profit-driven private interests and the

RTA prior to any local community input and objection

445 Individual Object to all proposed corridors - significant social impacts

445 Individual Rail is the answer; convert truck jobs to rail jobs. Rail and non-feasibility have not been considered as options. This

project is flawed

446 Individual Do traffic numbers really justify the expense of upgrading the highway?

446 Individual

Alternative option to upgrading Great Western Highway would be to upgrade Berghoffers Pass (which runs parallel

to existing highway) which is of an easier gradient; using the Darling Causeway, bypassing Mount Victoria and then

heading across the Newnes Plateau

446 Individual We have properties in Hartley Vale and object to any proposed corridors that have been directed through Hartley

Valley

446 Individual

We have had plans approved to extend our house as well as a grand plan designed for the whole property. This

would be untenable if the RTA decides on the proposed corridor that runs through Hartley Vale. We would be faced

with a freeway through our paddock. We would have to sell our property and move out of the valley

446 Individual

If any of the four Hartley Valley corridors were chosen it would change the idyllic haven which we have nurtured

and moulded as our home with the ultimate view of living permanently in Hartley Vale. We have a long association

with the place. We chose Hartley Vale because of its peacefulness, natural beauty, wildlife, historic depth and

proximity to our family

447 Individual Orange corridor - emissions from a tunnel will be easily removed and dispersed into the atmosphere because

Mount Victoria is one of the highest points on the Blue Mountains.

447 Individual

Newnes corridor - cost of the project ($900 million) for the amount of projected traffic flow is ridiculous (5,100

Vehicle Movements per Day in 2011 rising to only 8,300 by 2041). Cost estimates always blow out considerably

and the traffic forecasts are usually overstated.

447 Individual

Orange corridor - tunnel option at approximately $120million a km (this costing estimate was sourced from the

RTA) is a very cost effective option. With an anticipated length of 2.2km and gradient of only 3% it would cost only

$264million. Allowing for a cost estimate of $100million for re-alignment and improvements through the Hartley

Valley to the existing highway and another $100million for River Lett Hill and the Forty Bends area the total cost of

the project would come in at $464million. This is about the same as the estimated cost of the new corridor through

Hartley used in the Cardno comparative study with a Newnes Plateau corridor.

447 Individual Highway through Lithgow is already a bypass of the CBD and a lot of businesses have been strategically built

along the highway. These businesses will be majorly affected by the Newnes Plateau option.

447 Individual

The engineering difficulties associated with the Newnes corridor are major with forecasts of cuttings up to 65m in

depth as well as bridge crossings over Farmers Creek which is Lithgow’s water supply. Being sandstone, this will

require sediment containing and there has not been a good record of this so far in the construction work

undertaken on the Great Western Highway upgrade over the mountains. This is a major concern for the

environment and waterways.

447 Individual The weather of the Newnes Plateau also needs to be considered for frost/ice and snow issues.

447 Individual

When the traffic projections were done, the Bells Line of Road was not considered to be impacted by increased

traffic flows. This is a severe oversight as one of the reasons given for the highway upgrade is because of the high

accident rate on the existing road between Mount Victoria and Lithgow. The already high accident rate on Bells

Line of Road will only dramatically increase if the Newnes Plateau option goes ahead. The only provision for the

Clarence, Dargan, Bell, Mount Wilson, Mount Irvine, Mount Tomah and Bilpin areas for emergency services is the

Rural Fire Service. More accidents on the Bells line of road puts further lives at risk and pressure on this volunteer

organization that was set up to protect property and the environment from bush fires not attend motor vehicle

accidents.

447 Individual

A high quality dual carriageway already exists between Tunnel Hill 12km west of Lithgow (where this option is to

join the existing Great Western Highway) and to South Bowenfels to the Mount Victoria side of Lithgow. The

Newnes Plateau option would be “duplicating” this piece of major road infrastructure.

447 Individual

Green and purple corridors - the engineering difficulties are major as the corridors pass north of Mount Victoria

from Soldiers Pinch and will require crossing the main western railway line to get onto the causeway before making

it down the western escarpment to the Hartley valley

447 Individual The red corridor, unless they use a tunnel under Mount Victoria, will not pass the “Mount Victoria will be by passed”

pledge made by Bob Debus.

447 Individual Orange corridor - River Lett Hill can be easily improved and this can be the place where the earth that is removed

by tunneling is used, which will have a good cost saving potential.

447 Individual

Orange corridor - tunnel is the only option that gives Mount Victoria and Mount Victoria Pass a true bypass. The

only heavy vehicles that would be still using the Mount Victoria Pass will be the few vehicles that have what would

be classed as “dangerous loads” or majorly over sized loads (i.e. explosives or dangerous chemicals). It will make

Mount Victoria the only village in the Blue Mountains along the highway to truly have no highway through it.

447 Individual Orange corridor - tunnel option has wide ranging community support and also most importantly, from key

environment groups. It will be something that all will be proud to support.

447 Individual Orange corridor - tunnel option is the shortest route and will have also the best gradient of all the options. This will

massively improve freight efficiency which is an important objective of the Highway upgrade.

447 Individual Orange corridor - tunnel option fulfills Bob Debus’s pre election pledge to bypass Mount Victoria and upgrade the

Great Western Highway between Mount Victoria and Lithgow.

447 Individual

Newnes Plateau area is a recognised special environment (it is listed in the Gardens of Stone Park proposal stage

2 as well as many other significant publications and registrars) which contains many unique eco systems that

contain endangered flora and fauna.

447 Individual

Newnes Plateau area adjoins national park and is an important wildlife and vegetation zone between the Wollemi

Park Wilderness area and the urban and farmland areas to the west and south. The building of a highway through

this area would utterly destroy the free movement of fauna in these areas as well as causing untold environmental

destruction

447 Individual

The notion that “there is nothing there” is why the Newnes Plateau option was put forward in the first place and is

the exact reason why it should not be built. It is an ignorant view of our most precious resource, our environment.

This has even more significance in the case of “Global Warming” and that the Blue Mountains area holds “World

heritage” status. We should have evolved from driving bulldozers through areas because all that is there is the

environment.

447 Individual A highway through Newnes Plateau will further open it up to exploitation by the sand mining, coal mining and the

native and plantation forestry industries that are already operating in the area.

447 Individual

Red, green, purple corridors - will be environmentally damaging to the Western Escarpment that has also been put

forward in the Gardens of Stone Park proposal Stage 2. This area west of the Darling Causeway is very sensitive

and should be protected.

447 Individual

Newnes Plateau is the junction of the Dharug, Gundungurra and the Wirrajerri tribes. There are many areas that

still have not been identified formally in this area. There are also significant heritage sites developed since

European settlement that need to be considered. These include the Zig Zag railway (which is in the process of

extending their track into the area ear marked as the corridor), Newnes railway, the area known as the Clarence

Cuttings on Chifley road (which was the old railway) and numerous other sites that have been identified and others

yet to be formally identified.

447 Individual

Red, green, purple corridors - there is only one existing road west off the Darling Causeway called Hartley Vale

road which was part of the original Bell’s Line of Road and is a very picturesque and historic road. There are major

historically significant sites that these corridors will have to overcome both pre and post European settlement.

447 Individual

Newnes corridor - inconvenience to residents of the Clarence, Dargan, Bell, Mount Wilson and Mount Irvine areas.

The Cardno study states the Darling Causeway will possibly be closed to traffic during construction. Newnes

corridor will also mean total decimation of the Bell and Dargan communities with a highway constructed right

through them. It is noted on the report by Cardno that there will be significant impact on private land owners.

447 Individual Newnes corridor will have Impact on tourism and recreational choice and opportunity. The Darling Causeway, Bells

Line of Road should be listed as the “best and most scenic road journey in Australia”.

447 Individual Orange corridor - keeping the existing road corridor through the valley would save environmental, social, historical

constraints

447 Individual The Newnes Plateau corridor is longer and there will only be minor improvements in travelling time.

447 Individual Traffic modelling has not addressed the extra traffic that will go down the Bells Line of Road if either the green or

purple corridors are built. The extra traffic will cause more accidents on this already accident prone road

447 Individual Mount Victoria Pass will still be a major route if the green and purple corridors are built

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH) Building roads for B Double trucks is not climate sensitive

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH)

Tunnel option - there are many positives of tunneling under Mount Victoria and then continuing along through

Hartley Valley on the existing but improved alignment. There is no need to bypass River Lett Hill as the existing

road and gradient can be easily improved to achieve a less than a 6% gradient and with the elimination of all the

sharp and dangerous corners. When the highway gets to a few hundred meters from “Fernhill” on top of River Lett

Hill travelling west the road can be taken to the south of this historic property on a new route which will eliminate

another 2 dangerous corners.

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH)

A tunnel option, as well as keeping to the existing highway through and out of the valley to the west with

improvements is by far the most environmentally responsible option

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH)

We live where we live because of the environment and these options are a total destruction of our most precious

landscape. Newnes Plateau is a World Heritage Listed area and this should be considered more than the wishes

of the transport lobby.

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH)

The communities further down the mountains from Bell on the Bells Line of Road have not been consulted about

this road upgrade, again a major oversight or another fault in the planning to not look at the consequences on other

roads by building a new section of road

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH) Building roads for B Double trucks is not a community based decision

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH)

BAGATH calls for an additional extension to the corridor display period so that the findings of the Central West

Transport Needs Study (due approx March 2009) can also be considered and enabling us to make more informed

comments about the corridors.

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH)

A tunnel option, as well as keeping to the existing highway through and out of the valley to the west with

improvements is not divisive to the communities that this highway passes through.

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH)

The 3 options that utilise the Darling Causeway will see a large amount of extra traffic along the Bells Line of Road

which will have a major impact on its already high accident rate. Both the consultants so far have not done any

traffic modelling on this which I find ridiculous.

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH)

The Great Western Highway upgrade is not listed in Infrastructure Australia’s list of projects being considered for

funding from the Infrastructure Australia Fund. Rail from the Central West via Sandy Hollow to Newcastle was

mentioned and is the best way to service the majority of this area, not by trucks over the Blue Mountains. The

western railway line over the mountains has the capacity to dramatically increase the amount of freight that uses

this line. With better planning we would be able to dramatically reduce the amount of road freight over the Blue

Mountains. One suggestion is to use the Clarence Colliery rail loop for a sand transport terminal with another in St

Mary’s to enable a “Sand” freight train. This would take all the sand trucks off the mountains.

448 Bells Action Group Against

The Highway (BAGATH)

A large proportion of the Blue Mountains community is against the road freight industry and is totally against the

likelihood of 9 axle B Doubles travelling over the Blue Mountains. If a suitable 9 axle B Double route is built

between Mount Victoria to Lithgow there will be major objections to these trucks being permitted over the

Mountains.

449

Greater Blue Mountains

World Heritage Area

Advisory Committee

The Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area Advisory Committee support the conservation of Newnes

Plateau as part of the Gardens of Stone Stage 2 proposal and recognises the significant value of the area as a

buffer to the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area (GBMWHA) and as an important climate change refuge

for species in the World Heritage Area (due to its higher elevation)

449

Greater Blue Mountains

World Heritage Area

Advisory Committee

The Newnes option could have impacts on the catchments of the Wollangambe and Wolgan Rivers - both part of

the GBMWHA and there is also potential for negative impacts on significant vegetation, threatened species and

communities, wildlife habitat

449

Greater Blue Mountains

World Heritage Area

Advisory Committee

The Newnes option has potential for negative impacts on recreational amenity of the Newnes Plateau

450 Individual

Most prominent adverse comparative feature of the Cardno report is the higher cost of the Newnes route. It is hard

to understand the main factors in cost difference. Costs of Farmers Creek and escarpment bridges themselves are

less than half the difference. The 6% gradient alternative appears to have an excessive total cost compared with

steeper grade of 8%, only partly due to longer bridges. The not yet released Central West Transport Needs Study

may disclose sufficient benefits for improving the whole traffic corridor to make the cost of Newnes acceptable.

450 Individual

Aggregate system cost of building road, added to cost of B-double vehicle fleets (and their operating costs and

traffic delays through string of suburbs from Mount Victoria to load transfer points near port of Newcastle, Port

Botany or Port Kembla) may compare unfavourably with ARTC's case for more intermodal road-rail freight

terminals using dedicated freight lines segregated from passenger lines

450 Individual Changed relative operating costs of 'peak oil' truck diesel fuel, versus rail electrification

450 Individual

Considering the federal Building Australia Fund only offers $12.6b for all nationwide infrastructure projects and the

states have submitted $190b projects, the probability of the Great Western Highway upgrade making the next 5-

year program is poor

450 Individual Lithgow could be expected to prefer the purple option delivering their traffic to the present entry to the city

450 Individual

Upgrade of Darling Causeway (at top of heritage Grose Valley area) would require exceptional care with water runoff,

due to already critically degraded water quality resulting from mining. The crossing of Farmers Creek

watershed would require water run-off filter protection for Lithgow's water supply.

450 Individual The junctions of the new route with old highway would be hazardous using swallow crossings instead of bridges

450 Individual Fog, cloud, and road ice would have to monitored and warning signs changed frequently at some times of the year

450 Individual

Reduction of traffic in the distant time horizon when the upgrade is completed due to global warming, reducing

rainfall and water availability reducing Central West (and far west) rural output and consequential transport needs

by 20%. This would take a wide range of presently marginal rural business below break-even.

450 Individual

Allocation of higher priority to alternative commercial transport routes for Federal funding, eg the Cootamundra-

Parkes stage of a Melbourne-Brisbane rail line. ARTC is seeking $4b for trunk rail developments throughout

Australia

451 Individual

Green and purple corridors - there appears to be sufficient land outside the National Park to allow the route to track

well to the East of the railway line until it is well away from the village. I do not know what the position is with

assuming any park land if required. If that were necessary and feasible I would submit it would have considerably

less environmental impact to the National Park from a minor encroachment than the impact otherwise to the

environment and heritage value of the Mount Victoria township.

451 Individual

Orange and red corridors - potentially go right through the village of Mount Victoria and appear to be contrary to

the Minister's announcement of 19 December. I assume they are not in that form likely to be pursued.

451 Individual Red and orange corridors - are clearly a very significant blight on the environmental and historic aspects of the

Blue Mountains and would destroy the area.

451 Individual

Green and purple corridors - they should be kept well to the east of the village and below the railway line to shield

Mount Victoria from the effect of the road noise and visual impairment. If the route were to follow the existing path

of the Darling Causeway on the western side of the railway line it would have a dramatic effect on Mount Victoria

village and in particular houses such as ours that face back towards the east across the valley to the west of the

current Darling Causeway. We already experience considerable road noise and visual impact from the Causeway

as it leaves the village.

452 Department of Defence

Defence Establishment Marrangaroo is an important Defence asset that operates as an explosive ordnance

training area. It also accommodates an Army Reserve unit and cadet unit. This site is utilised for Defence activities

throughout the year. The time and frequency of Defence activities can fluctuate depending on operational

requirements. Defence has an enduring requirement for this facility. Defence seeks to ensure that the long-term

viability of Marrangaroo amunition depot is not compromised. The Newnes Plateau corridor option would

significantly undermine the operational capabilities of the facility.

453 Individual Orange corridor - already exists thereby saving money

453 Individual Red, green, purple, Newnes corridors - all involve environmental destruction including habitat destruction. I don't

support these options

453 Individual Orange corridor - already exists thereby saving environment and impact on rural and bush land

454 Oberon Council Oberon Council resolved at its meeting of 20 January 2009 that the Newnes Plateau route would be endorsed as

Council's preferred option for the Mount Victoria to Lithgow upgrade

455 Centennial Coal Company

Centennial's Clarence and Springvale mines have mining leases on the Newnes Plateau. RTA's Newnes corridor

option presents a potential land use conflict. The RTA proposed corridor crosses 3 mining leases and therefore

poses a significant construction constraint for any proposed transport infrastructure project. If this route is adopted,

road design must take into account mine subsidence and this may cause a substantial increase in the cost of the

upgrade.

455 Centennial Coal Company Centennial Coal Company has 4 coalmines operating in the western coalfields supported by a workforce of nearly

700. Centennial is a major employer in the area with strong ties to the local community

455 Centennial Coal Company

As a key stakeholder of the Newnes Plateau option, Centennial requests the RTA to formally engage with both our

organisation and the Mineral Resources Division of the Dept of Primary Industries to ensure any potential land use

conflicts can be avoided

456 Individual Green and purple corridors - construction of a highway would generate significant amounts of greenhouse gases

due to the steep descent and ascent at the east and west ends of the corridors.

456 Individual

The long term carbon foot print generated by the Newnes route as opposed to the green and purple corridors

suggests the Newnes route is far more environmentally sound and therefore in line with the Prime Minster’s

objective of green house gas emission reduction.

456 Individual

There is no documented evidence of the extreme low temperatures experienced in the valley which will impose an

unknown risk to green and purple corridor in relation the possible icy conditions. However, it is common knowledge

of the residents that minus 5 to minus 10 degree temperatures are regular throughout the winter period. A high

speed road with these conditions would create a hazard of extreme magnitude. Fog in the valley is another hazard

that has not been evaluated.

456 Individual Newnes corridor - the difference in level between the highway at Tunnel Hill at Marangaroo to the plateau is less

that 100m which suggests a far more efficient road gradient.

456 Individual

The area where the green corridor descends over the side of the Darling Causeway escarpment has a number of

very sensitive hanging swamps. The RTA maps show these as “forest”, even though there is a category on these

maps for hanging swamps.

456 Individual

We object to proposed green and purple corridors. Collits' Inn is one of the most historic of Australia’s early inns.

Built in 1823, it was the first wayside inn built west of the Blue Mountains and was sited to service explorers using

the first roads descending Mount York. It lies in the beautiful Vale of Clwydd at the base of Mount York and the foot

of Cox’s Road. Every traveller moving from Sydney to the Outer Settlements near Bathurst would have stayed at

the Inn after the frightening descent of Mount York including three Governors (Bourke, Brisbane and Darling).

456 Individual

Collits’ Inn and its group of surviving buildings are of National Significance for its rare historical, aesthetic, technical

and social values. It was built in c 1823 by Pierce Collits and his family and was initially also known as the Golden

Fleece. It was the first wayside inn built west of the Blue Mountains and was sited to service people and stock

using the first roads descending Mount York.

Collits’ Inn has an important range of strong historical associations such as those with early Governors of NSW,

early surveyors, possible early military connections, a focal point for all roads crossing the mountains for many

years and the first country post office. The adjacent cemetery has direct connections with the Collits’ family and the

Inn is historically important in itself for its associations with first settlement west of the Blue Mountains.

The Inn is an excellent example of a wayside Inn from the Colonial period with many of the characteristics of the

old Georgian style.

456 Individual Green Corridor would impact on fields to the north of Collits’ Inn where there are sites of indigenous heritage,

including a tool sharpening stone and an area for making stone tools

456 Individual The setting at a remote site in the Vale of Clwydd below a spur of the Blue Mountains and its visual relationship to

Mount York contributes to the aesthetic significance of Colitts Inn.

456 Individual

From the first discovery of this valley to today the valley has been documented and described as that of beauty and

tranquillity. See submission # 457 containing excerpts scanned from the original visitor’s books of Collits’ Inn. They

all describe the peacefulness, tranquillity and beauty of Hartley Vale. The valley has maintained all these qualities

prior to and after its discovery by western settlers. Rhe natural arc formed by the sky line of Mount Clarence and

the adjacent mountain to the east is significant to the positioning of Collits’ Inn. This arc is perfectly symmetrical

when viewed from the Northern veranda of Collits’ Inn. The symmetry is lost when viewing east or west of Collits’

due to parallax error. The green and purple proposals would destroy this natural phenomenon. Let’s hope the Hon

Bob Debus MP and the RTA are not documented in history as the destroyers of the valley’s finest qualities.

456 Individual Purple Corridor would have significant impacts on residents in the Hartley Valley, scar the Western Escarpment

and degrade significant cultural, natural and heritage values

457 APA Group

The APA Group has no concerns with the RTA's current plans regarding the Great Western Highway upgrade. The

APA Group would have concerns if your company considers an upgrade on the western side of Lithgow (ie Lithgow

to Bathurst).

458 Individual

What the RTA has missed here is an opportunity to enhance its reputation and probably save the community

money by developing an imaginative plan of road buiding using perhaps a series of short tunnels and scenic

viaducts to overcome the difficulties of Victoria Pass in the same spirit that Governor Macquarie achieved in his

day. This would be the environmentally responsible route and one the public would expect to be taken. Amongst

your options, it is not even considered!

458 Individual In the worst option it is proposed to transverse much of the Newnes Plateau, across what one might term 'virgin

country' marked as it is with valuable upland swamps.

458 Individual

I object to various options for the proposed new routes to take the Great Western Highway west of Mount Victoria.

It would seem to me to take a brave planner who would be willing to venture off what one could describe as the

existing well beaten track. After examining all five proposals I find this is what is proposed.

458 Individual

There has not been proper public debate on your proposed routes and making determinations at this time will invite

a huge public outcry and bring the RTA into further disrepute - something that I suspect the Government can

presently do without. It will pitch practical country people who live in western districts against formidable city

environmentalists and people who can see bad planning when it is brought to their attention.

458 Individual Should Newnes Plateau option be built then it will then invite far greater use of the Bells Line of Road with impacts

you do not appear to have even begun to consider.

459 Individual

I would be horrified to see the highway go through the Mount Victoria village for all the obvious reasons but mostly

because of what I have seen done in Leura and Katoomba. This area of the highway upgrade is gross in its

dimensions and appearance; it has destroyed the beauty and ambience of the approach to these villages not to

mention the valued historical remnants of the old convict road. If this is what we can look forward to for other

villages in the mountains then I am totally against any further developments to the Great Western Highway The

noise arising from the new road at the pproach to Leura is five times worse then prior to the upgrade. In my home

in Mount Victoria I am regularly appalled at the level of noise arising from Victoria Pass as it is today and would

find it unacceptable and even damaging to my quality of life if the level of traffic noise was to increase due any so

called upgrade to the Great Western Highway in this area. In my opinion the Great Western Highway should be relocated

to an area that is less valued and sensitive. The Blue Mountains are a much valued and deeply loved

Aussie icon: historical, environmental, cultural, recreational and so on, why can’t you leave it in peace.

460

National Trust of Australia

(NSW) Blue Mountains

Branch

A tunnel should be able to be done at the same or less cost than all the other alternative routes.

460

National Trust of Australia

(NSW) Blue Mountains

Branch

The route should keep as close as possible to the existing route; we strongly support the construction of a tunnel at

suitable grades from Mount Victoria down to Little Hartley. The tunnel should be started at Soldiers Pinch so that

the new road would have no impact on the existing heritage village and buildings, as will happen in Lawson. Tunnel

would have advantage of removing high noise impact from trucks driving on steeper grades. We urge that a tunnel

solution is followed in any final designs and construction

460

National Trust of Australia

(NSW) Blue Mountains

Branch

Any corridor proposed outside the existing route will have serious negative effects on the existing natural

environment.

460

National Trust of Australia

(NSW) Blue Mountains

Branch

There should be no impact on the original Coxs Road route

460

National Trust of Australia

(NSW) Blue Mountains

Branch

Any corridor proposed outside the existing route will have serious negative effects on the current living conditions

in the villages and small communities along these corridors

461 Department of Environment,

Water, Heritage and the Arts

Commonwealth Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts writes to explain how the EPBC Act

could apply to the Great Western Highway upgrade proposal. The EPBC protects matters of national

environmental significance including World Heritage Properties and National Heritage places and nationally listed

threatened species and ecological communities. The Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area is adjacent to

Mount Victoria and Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone are known to occur in the area.

461 Department of Environment,

Water, Heritage and the Arts

Any person proposing to take an action that is likely to have a significant impact on a matter of national

environmental significance must refer their proposal to the Department for assessment and approval. Substantial

penalties may otherwise apply. Not all actions affecting matters protected by the EPBC Act will have a significant

impact and require approval. Guidelines are available from the Department's website at

www.environment.gov.au/epbc. If the question of significance is unclear, refer the proposal to the Department who

will advise accordingly. Referral of a proposal to take an action may include alternative proposals relating to

location or timeframe of the action. A referral form is also available on the website.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Department of Primary Industries (DPI) has 4 main areas of interest: aquatic habitat protection and threatened

aquatic species; agricultural land protection, mineral resources; forestry. There are no immediate issues of concern

from agriculture. This submission details comments from DPI fisheries and mineral resources. A forestry response

will be forwarded separately.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Coal related mineral issues - Newnes corridor overlies CCL742, A307, CCL705, ML1303. Coal resources within

this corridor are summarised as follows: North Western Section - Seam: Katoomba; Depth: 215m; Thickness: 2m.

Seam: Wongawilli; Depth: 222m; Thickness: 11m; Seam: Lithgow; Depth: 315m; Thickness: 4m. South Eastern

Section - Seam: Katoomba: Depth: 200; Thickness: 2.5m. Any resource recovery within Newnes corridor would be

by underground mining methods and therefore mine subsidence may occur. DPI Coal Advice does not support this

corridor. DPI contact is Leslie Wiles.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Green corridor - no current coal titles occur in this area. This area has potential for underground mining as the

Katoomba seam is present at 230m. DPI Coal Advice does not support this corridor.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Red corridor - no current coal titles occur in this area. The area has some underground mining potential. DPI Coal

Advice does not support this corridor.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Purple corridor - a small eastern section of this corridor overlies CCL742. This area has potential for underground

mining as the Katoomba seam is present at 230m. DPI Coal Advice does not support this corridor.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Orange corridor - no current coal titles occur in this area. This corridor is the preferred route by DPI Coal Advice for

the Great Western Highway upgrade.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

The four southern corridors have very little, if any, impact upon known or potential non coal mineral resources. The

orange corridor overlaps with the Mount Victoria brick clay resource. However, if the proposed route either follows

the existing highway or is to the north of it, there would be no foreseeable sterilisation of the currently identified

resource in that area.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Newnes Plateau Corridor is contentious as it overlies an area containing large resources and potential resources of

construction sand that are already a significant source of construction sand for the Sydney region and are a major

potential source for Sydney’s future needs. The deposits also have potential, with beneficiation, for the production

of industrial sand, including sand for glass manufacture. In addition, kaolin, which is present in the tailings

generated from washing the sand, is a potential by-product.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Newnes corridor goes directly over several identified sand resources. Of most concern is the situation at the

Hanson’s Kables (Clarence) Quarry, approximately one kilometre north of Clarence, where the proposed corridor

lies completely within the quarrying operation. Kables quarry is currently the largest sand producer on the plateau.

Of lesser concern is the impact upon the Boral Resources Pty Ltd Newnes Road operation, approximately 3.5 km

west of Deane, which only overlaps slightly with the corridor. The Rocla Quarries Pty Ltd Sandham Road

operation, approximately 0.5 km south of Newnes Junction, may also be affected by the corridor, but if the

proposed road development follows the existing Bells Line of Road in the Clarence – Newnes Junction area, then

there would probably be little effect on those resources.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Should the Newnes Plateau option be chosen as the preferred option, the proposed route should be planned to

avoid existing quarrying operations and ensure that provision is made for access from these sites to the new road.

In order to assist with selection of the final corridor DPI Minerals strongly advises that the RTA contact the

operators of potentially impacted quarries in the area for further advice regarding current and future quarrying

operations. DPI contact is Gary Burton.

462 Department of Primary

Industries

DPI fisheries don't have a preferred route option, however, once a route is selected DPI expects a sound

assessment be undertaken on potential impacts that highway upgrade would have on waterways along the route.

In order to protect aquatic habitats, issues relating to fish passage, water quality and riparian health must be

considered in the planning, construction and operation of the highway.

462 Department of Primary

Industries Consider mitigation of any increase in runoff, nutrients and sediment levels

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Fish passage to be maintained along waterways within the route corridor. Piping, in-stream structures and poorly

designed waterway crossings have potential to block fish passage. Waterway crossings proposed for new route

should be reviewed by DPI fisheries. DPI's preferred waterway crossing designs are outlined in "Why do fish need

to cross the road? Fish Passage Requirements for Waterway Crossings" (NSW Fisheries 2003). Also available on

http://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/fisheries/habitat/protecting-habitats/toolkit

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Presence of sensitive habitat and/or threatened species may require more specific conditions and protective

measures being implemented

462 Department of Primary

Industries Consider possible negotiation of offsets and compensation for unavoidable impacts to aquatic habitat

462 Department of Primary

Industries

Under section 199 of Fisheries Management Act 1994, the RTA is required to seek concurrence with DPI on any

dredging and reclamation activities associated with works within a waterway. RTA is also required to obtain a Part 7

permit from DPI (under sections 218-220 of the Act) for permanent or temporary blockage to fish passage during

any phase of the highway upgrade.

Appendix

36