Pacific Highway ranked as NSW’s worst road in NRMA survey – again

The Pacific Highway has gained the title of NSW”s worst road for the fifth year running. Photo: Marina Neil Motorists rated Parramatta Road as the third worst road in the NSW. Photo: Anthony Johnson

The Pacific Highway has gained the ignominy of being voted the worst road in NSW for the fifth consecutive year.

An annual survey of almost 8000 motorists by the NRMA has also rated Pennant Hills Road and Parramatta Road as the second- and third-most loathed roads in ‘s most populous state.

Roads in greater Sydney comprised five of the top 10 places in the motoring group’s survey, although the M5 West at Padstow no longer infuriates as many motorists as it has in the past.

This year the M5 West rated ninth on the list of the 10 worst roads, compared with third in 2014. The improvement was attributed to a widening of the motorway, which has helped ease congestion.

NRMA president Kyle Loades said it was no surprise that the Pacific Highway remains the No.1 most frustrating road for motorists because bottlenecks occurred where it intersects with Pennant Hills Road in northern Sydney, at Hexham near Newcastle and at Coffs Harbour.

“The good news is that in four years’ time, [the Pacific Highway] will be fully duplicated and a lot of those stresses and strains will be alleviated,” he said on Wednesday. “But until then we have … to keep it on track for a 2020 completion. Motorists just have to accept there is a bit of a pain [in the meantime].”

Mr Loades said the better rating for the M5 showed that practical improvements to roads could have an immediate impact for motorists without costing billions of dollars.

While big transport projects such as WestConnex, NorthConnex and the North-West Rail Link would change Sydney for the better, Mr Loades said the community did not need to await their completion to improve conditions for motorists.

“Parramatta Road is a relic of the colonial era, but as we have recently seen, traffic information systems, signage and clearways make a difference. That holds for the Pacific Highway,” he said.

“The current routes will bear the brunt of traffic into the next decade and we can make some practical improvements that will have an immediately positive effect.”

Motorists in Sydney’s west were the most frustrated with the state of their roads. Concord took the NRMA’s title of the suburb with the worst roads in NSW, followed by Holgate, Beecroft, Pennant Hills and Castle Hill.

“It is all to do with congestion and, once again, bring on the WestConnex, the NorthConnex and the North-West Rail Link because they are going to make an enormous dent into alleviating that congestion,” he said.

Mr Loades said there had been a 90 per cent drop in crashes resulting in injury on the Princes Highway north of Jervis Bay since the roadway was upgraded.

The peak motoring group also pointed out that commuting on Sydney’s M4 motorway takes on average 10 minutes longer than in 2007, which it said highlighted the case for completing the city’s road and public transport network.

In May, an audit by Infrastructure revealed Sydney motorists drive on seven of the eight worst road corridors in the country. It named Pennant Hills Road between Parramatta and Hornsby as the road with the worst economic toll in the country.

The second-most expensive corridor in , which Infrastructure  measured by delays to motorists per lane, was King Georges Road from the Princes Highway in southern Sydney to the M4 in the west. 10 worst roads in NSW in 2015

1. Pacific Highway

2. Pennant Hills Road

3. Parramatta Road

4. Princes Highway

5. M4 Western Motorway

6. Wattle Tree Road (Holgate)

7. Great Western Highway

8. Barton Highway

9. M5 Motorway

10. Narellan Road

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