'Grave concern' over congested thoroughfare

Feeling the pinch: Fairfield MP Guy Zangari and Shadow Roads Minister John Graham at the corner of The Horsley Drive and Polding Street. Picture: Simon Bennett
Feeling the pinch: Fairfield MP Guy Zangari and Shadow Roads Minister John Graham at the corner of The Horsley Drive and Polding Street. Picture: Simon Bennett

Fairfield MP Guy Zangari said the needs of the community are "clearly not a priority" with three intersections within a two-kilometre stretch on The Horsley Drive part of 12-key pinch points with a shortfall in funding.

In June, it was revealed a $6.72 billion shortfall in funding for 26 new and expanded roads projects promised by the Coalition had been identified in internal advice to the NSW government in 2019.

The report obtained by Labor lists the Sydney roads projects Transport for NSW warned had no funding allocated, despite election promises.

This includes three intersections on The Horsley Drive at Nelson Street, Polding Street and the Cumberland Highway with a $70 million shortfall to ease congestion at the pinch points.

Mr Zangari said the Fairfield community "deserves better."

"The safety of pedestrians and motorists at the intersection of The Horsley Drive and Polding Street in Fairfield has been a matter of grave concern in our community for many years," he said.

"This arterial thoroughfare is routinely congested and is a known hotspot for vehicle accidents. The needs of our community are clearly not a priority for this government who made a long list of election promises in 2019 they weren't prepared to fund.

"Instead of focusing on much needed road upgrades, realignment and improvements to the intersection, the NSW Liberals/Nationals Government focused on the installation of a new red light speed camera, which is one of many newly installed speed cameras throughout the Fairfield Local Government Area.

"Despite collecting more than $21 million in revenue from red light and average speed cameras over the past four years from the Fairfield electorate alone, our community once again is forced to go without."

When asked if funding had been allocated to the three projects and if there was a timeline to start, a Transport for NSW spokesman said: "The Horsley Drive is a key transport corridor in south-west Sydney and the NSW Government is committed to tackling congestion and reducing travel times for motorists in the area."

The spokesman said Transport for NSW recently sought feedback on proposed improvements at the intersection of The Horsley Drive and Cumberland Highway in Smithfield.

The proposed changes include extending both southbound left and right turn bays on Cumberland Highway into The Horsley Drive to improve traffic flow and reduce delays.

"This feedback from the community will assist in determining next steps for the project," the spokesman said.

"Transport for NSW is continuing to investigate options for the intersections of The Horsley Drive and Nelson Street, and The Horsley Drive and Polding Street.

"The community will be kept informed as the projects progress."

Shadow Transport Minister John Graham said the government "promised" the road spending at the election.

"Now they're breaking those promises," he said.

"The focus should be on bringing forward these projects to stimulate the economy. Instead the government is pushing them back - slashing funding over the forward estimates. Local jobs are at risk if they can't deliver their promises."