RE: Great Western Highway widening.
What would it be like if Matt Kean (Minister for Energy and Environment) was also the local member for Bathurst and Minister for Regional Transport and Roads in NSW?
I'll bet that widening the Great Western Highway would not be top of his priority list.
Instead, I expect he would be getting the bogged-down Transport for NSW out of its rut and be looking at efficient, sustainable alternatives that would better meet the vital transport needs of the Central West.
I can understand freight transporters do not like the thought of increased use of rail transport: all that unloading of trucks, loading and unloading freight onto and off trains, then reloading onto trucks for delivery to final destinations. So cumbersome and so inefficient.
But what if we could drive already loaded trucks straight onto trains and off again on the other side of the tortuous Blue Mountains? Truckies would still be needed and could benefit from the rest period, efficient and modern transport hubs could easily be built at Lithgow and (say) St Marys, and purposely designed flatbed carriages could be built in Australia (hopefully in Bathurst) - and all at a fraction of the cost of widening the Great Western Highway.
Such schemes have been successfully and sustainably implemented in Europe and Canada. What a game changer it would be.
All it needs is some foresight, courage and determination to not be led by the entrenched bureaucrats in Transport for NSW.