South Australians will now save time and avoid sitting in traffic when heading north, with the six-lane 110km/h Northern Connector opening to traffic today.
The $867 million non-stop motorway is the next piece in the 78-kilometre North-South Corridor puzzle that connects the South Road Superway and Northern Expressway.
Premier of South Australia Steven Marshall said the Northern Connector would help drive tourism in South Australia’s beautiful northern regions.
“To coincide with the Northern Connector opening, Tourism Barossa have launched a new tourism campaign to drive tourism and encourage more people into the region,” Mr Marshall said.
“The new campaign will capitalise on the increased connectivity to the region, with the Barossa now less than an hour from Adelaide which will help drive tourism and jobs.”
Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said the Northern Connector project would open up over 43km of non-stop corridor.
“For the first time there is now a free-flowing link along one of Adelaide’s most important transport corridors – boosting safety in the area and busting congestion,” Mr Tudge said.
“It has created 480 jobs each year since it started in 2015, which is a great result for the community.”
Senator for South Australia Simon Birmingham said the opening of the Northern Connector would encourage South Australians and visitors to rediscover the excitement of a weekend away and boost tourism to the regions.
“The Northern Connector will link metropolitan Adelaide with our northern regions, making it easier for all South Australians to enjoy a daytrip, getaway or weekend away,” Mr Birmingham said.
“Visitors from interstate and overseas will also have quicker and better access to our regions to discover more of what our great state has to offer, while exporters will benefit from faster access to Port Adelaide and Adelaide Airport.”
South Australian Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Local Government Stephan Knoll said the Marshall Government’s $12.9 billion pipeline of infrastructure works would support thousands of jobs over the coming years.
“The opening to traffic on the Northern Connector is finally here and motorists now have 43km of non-stop North-South Corridor between the South Road Superway and Gawler,” Minister Knoll said.
“It’s been a long time coming but as of today, the Northern Connector will slash travel times and improve road safety.”
Senator for South Australia Alex Antic said he was excited to see the overall North-South Corridor upgrade progress.
“The Regency to Pym Project started construction late last year and we are working with the South Australian Government to finalise a Business Case for the final part of the North-South Corridor,” Mr Antic said.
Sixteen kilometres of cyclist and pedestrian paths were built as part of the project, helping to keep all types of road users safe.
The six-lane motorway will have a posted speed limit of 80km/h for the first few weeks to enable driver familiarisation and completion of testing.
The Southern Interchange will be reduced to 60km/h for driver safety.
Finishing works will also continue which may require some lane and speed restrictions, and a temporary closure, to ensure the safety of motorists and workers accessing the site. Advance notice will be provided.
The Northern Connector project was jointly funded, with the Australian Government committing $693.6 million to the project and the South Australian government committing $173.4 million.