Rural roads need upgrading for airport at Badgerys Creek

Focus on local roads: LJ Hooker West Hoxton principal Joe Sacco says Fifteenth Avenue and many other roads need upgrading. Picture: Simon Bennett

Focus on local roads: LJ Hooker West Hoxton principal Joe Sacco says Fifteenth Avenue and many other roads need upgrading. Picture: Simon Bennett

FOR Joe Sacco all rural roads lead to the airport planned at Badgerys Creek.

Mr Sacco, the principal of LJ Hooker West Hoxton, said that before the airport could be built, many of the roads leading to the site of the planned airport, including Fifteenth Avenue, where his office is located, needed to be upgraded.

He said that in the 10 years that he had been working in the area, the road hadn't changed very much.

"About two years ago the council fixed a few potholes," Mr Sacco said.

"But Fifteenth Avenue will be a major link to the airport site, so it needs much more work than that.

"At the moment it's one lane in each direction, no street lights, no zoning, no speed humps and it's not sealed.

"It can even be a bit dangerous, because people fly through the street at high speed because there's nothing to stop them."

Liverpool mayor Ned Mannoun said that the Badgerys Creek airport taskforce, recently formed by Liverpool Council, would be lobbying to have local roads such as Fifteenth Avenue upgraded before the airport is built.

"The federal government has dedicated $200 million in funding for local roads and we're going to provide them with some recommendations about which roads we think should be upgraded," Cr Mannoun said.

"That will be one of the first things on the agenda when the taskforce meets for the first time next month.

"Our goal will be to campaign for these roads, including Fifteenth Avenue, to be upgraded as soon as possible.

"We will also be campaigning for the government to provide public transport links, such as light rail to the airport site."

When he announced that the airport would go ahead in April Prime Minister Tony Abbott said the government would spend a total of $3.5 billion upgrading roads leading to the airport, including widening The Northern Road to four lanes from Narellan Road to the M4.

The roads package also included upgrading Elizabeth Drive from the M7 to the Northern Road and the overhaul of Bringelly Road to increase it to four lanes from Camden Valley Way to the Northern Road.

Mr Sacco said he was sure that West Hoxton had a bright future.

"The area has just been rezoned to residential recently, along with North Leppington and Austral, so there's a lot of growth and development to come."

He said inquiries about buying land and houses had gone up since the airport was announced earlier this year.

"I don't think people will be worried about living under flight paths.

"Look at how much people are willing to pay to live under flight paths in Leichhardt.

"Some older people, who have lived here for 50 years and don't want to sell their properties and move, are concerned, but the majority of people are really looking forward to development.

"This is just the beginning, it will take 10 to 20 years, but this area will be completely transformed and it's very important that the roads and the infrastructure are ready for that."

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