Work has started on the extension of Hutley Drive at Lennox Head.
Work has started on the extension of Hutley Drive at Lennox Head. Contributed

Work starts on long-awaited extension of Lennox Head road

CONSTRUCTION has started on long-awaited extension of Hutley Drive at Lennox Head.

The project has been on the cards for a number of years, with Ballina Shire Council investigating three main options to improve access to new and future residential developments, including Meadows Estate and Epiq.

It will also improve access to the shopping centre development and sports fields within the Epiq Lennox Estate.

The project will include the construction of a new connection road (extension of Hutley Drive), a new roundabout connecting Hutley Drive and Byron Bay Road, widening part of Byron Bay Road and a sound barrier wall to reduce impact to local properties.

Construction started this month and is expected to continue through to mid 2020.

The council's civil services group manager, John Truman, said traffic modelling had shown for many years that Hutley Drive should be extended in the north to The Coast Road/Byron Bay Road and in the south to North Creek Road.

"By extending Hutley Drive to the south and north will ensure that vehicles will move more efficiently through this location," he said.

"The northern extension will provide a safer connection to major roads, and reduce vehicle traffic in residential areas that are currently used to access arterial roads."

Mr Truman said the council has considered various options for the northern extension of Hutley Drive.

The council ended up buying 9 Byron Bay Road, which presented an "easier and more cost effective linkage option".

"Other options we've looked at include connecting Hutley Drive to a new roundabout on a realigned North Creek Road," Mr Truman said.

"Another option scoped was to connect Hutley Drive to the existing Coast Road roundabout.

"Unfortunately these proposals were cost prohibitive or did not meet contemporary engineering and traffic standards."