A LARGE stretch of new parkland will provide significant green space for Sydney's inner west and an underground connection will be built to take traffic off congested Victoria Road, under the new details of the concept design for the WestConnex interchange at Rozelle.
NSW Premier Mike Baird and Roads Minister Duncan Gay last week revealed the details of the interchange, which will be built largely under the disused former Rozelle Rail Yards. This will allow for the majority of the interchange to be grassed over with a new large park.
"Up to 10 hectares of new parkland will connect Annandale and Rozelle via pedestrian and cycle bridges and also provide a green link between Easton Park and Bicentennial Park," Mr Baird said.
The new tunnelled connection to the Iron Cove Bridge will be built within the existing WestConnex budget as part of the Rozelle Interchange and motorists will be able to travel through the tunnel from the Iron Cove Bridge to the Anzac Bridge or onto other sections of the WestConnex network, via the interchange.
Mr Gay said the intersection will be an incredible engineering feat and thanked the engineers who have been working to refine the designs of the Rozelle Interchange and its connections, meaning it will not add any additional cost to the project.
"The new tunnel connection is a wonderful addition to WestConnex which won't cost a cent more and will reduce traffic volumes on Victoria Road by nearly half," Mr Gay said.
Federal Minister for Urban Infrastructure Paul Fletcher said the Australian Government had supported WestConnex with $1.5 billion in grant funding and a $2 billion concessional loan.
"WestConnex will bring huge benefits to millions of commuters which is why we have been pleased to work so closely with the Baird Government in seeing this project through to completion," Mr Fletcher said.
The project requires a section of Victoria Road to be widened, meaning 27 properties will need to be acquired.
Local residents will benefit from improved pedestrian access to the existing light rail at Rozelle Bay, and for future Rapid Transit on Victoria Road.
The Rozelle interchange forms part of the third and final stage of WestConnex and will link the M4 and M5 between Haberfield, Rozelle and St Peters via a 9.2-kilometre tunnel with three lanes in each direction. Work is due to start in 2019 and be completed in 2023.
The M4-M5 link will carry an estimated 105,000 trips every day and will provide a western bypass of the CBD.
The government will be seeking feedback from the community on the concept design for the interchange.