NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell and Roads Minister, Duncan Gay witnessed first hand the traffic exiting the M4 at Emu Plains yesterday, saying that an upgrade the intersection at Leonay Parade will greatly improve safety and traffic congestion.
They were joined by Penrith MP, Stuart Ayres, who welcomed the $2 million upgrade that will reduce the number of vehicles queuing in the M4 breakdown lane for the turnoff during peak hour.
The upgrade will include traffic lights at the southbound approach to the roundabout on Russell Street to Emu Plains and a queue detector on the M4 off-ramp to activate the traffic lights when there are too many vehicles.
A left turn lane will be extended to 90 metres to allow for additional stopping space.
“Duncan Gay’s job is not only to build new infrastructure but to ensure the existing roads are more effective… we are about doing to the proper homework and providing solutions,” Mr O’Farrell said.
Mr Gay said that the project was funded from the pinch points program.
“The queuing can at times, extend back onto the M4 creating major traffic problems and increasing the risk of high speed crashes,” he said.
With weather permitting, the project should be completed within 18 months subject to community consultation.
Importantly, Mr Ayres said, the upgrade does not impinge on 1 Leonay Parade, which was originally owned by the Roads and Maritime Services but sold to a private developer.
“There will be some widening but the upgrade does not affect the land on Leonay Parade, it stays within the RMS land,” he said.
“I thank the Premier and Roads Minister for their support for what is a realative small cost upgrade that will have a significant effect on Penrith.”