Blue Mountains Road Tunnel, Blackheath to Hartley

By | May 31, 2022
NOW ON DISPLAY – Review of Environmental Factors (REF) and concept design for the proposed Katoomba to Blackheath Upgrade

JUST ANNOUNCED – Blackheath to Little Hartley preferred option. Together the Australian and NSW Governments are investing $2.5 billion towards upgrading the Great Western Highway between Katoomba and Blackheath, and between Little Hartley and Lithgow, respectively. The Great Western Highway Upgrade will reduce congestion, deliver safer, more efficient and reliable journeys for those travelling in, around and through the Blue Mountains, and better connect communities in the Central West.

Great Western Highway tunnel

Artist’s representation of Great Western Highway, near Explorers Road (indicative only, final layout to be determined through detailed design)


Transport for NSW (Transport) is proposing to widen the Great Western Highway between Katoomba and Blackheath to two lanes in each direction. The upgrade is split into two sections:

  • Katoomba to Medlow Bath between Rowan Lane, Katoomba and Bellevue Crescent, Medlow Bath (about 3.5 kilometres)
  • Medlow Bath to Blackheath between Station Street, Medlow Bath and Tennyson Road, Blackheath (about 1.8 kilometres)

Transport is now seeking your feedback on the Review of Environmental Factors (REF) and Concept Design for the proposed Katoomba to Blackheath Upgrade.

You can view the Katoomba to Blackheath Upgrade and make a submission now until midnight 19 June at our virtual consultation room. Or read a hard copy of the REF at (hard copies will arrive in the locations below from this Wednesday):

  • Katoomba Library
  • Katoomba Council Headquarters (foyer)
  • Glenbrook customer service counter
  • Blaxland Library


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Available 24/7 – Up to 11 people
Call: 0423 890 670

We invite you to speak to our project team and ask any questions you have at any of our online and face to face consultation sessions in May and June. Register here:
To find a consultation session convenient to you, look for information in the Community Update or visit
We recommend that you view the REF and concept design before you speak with the team or make a submission.


Transport has legal obligations to assess and mitigate impacts that may result from a proposed activity. An REF details these legal obligations, and the environmental impacts and proposed mitigation measures of a project.

Your input is important in helping to design the best upgrade we can for Katoomba to Blackheath. We invite you to review the proposed plans, understand the environmental impacts and have your say.

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We welcome all feedback on Katoomba to Blackheath Upgrade REF.
To have your input formally considered and receive a response in the Submissions Report, use our online submission form at email us at or mail a printed submission to PO Box 334, Parkes, NSW, 2870.
Consultation is open now until midnight Sunday 19 June 2022.
Transport has conducted extensive investigations into the feasibility of a tunnel between Blackheath and Little Hartley. Investigations have confirmed that two identical (twin) tunnels, one eastbound and one westbound, around 11 kilometres long would deliver more benefits for the environment, the community and road users than two shorter tunnels beneath the villages of Blackheath and Mount Victoria. Transport will take the Blackheath to Little Hartley tunnel option forward for further development, community consultation and environmental investigation.
We value your feedback on the Blackheath to Little Hartley Upgrade and it will be taken into consideration as we refine the concept design and prepare the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). Formal submissions will be invited during the display of the EIS, after which a Submissions Report will be provided. The Department of Planning are expected to place the EIS on display, and will invite community feedback, in the second half of 2022.


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FACE-TO-FACE sessions

QR code sign in will be required. If you are unwell on the day, please do not attend the premises.

  • Wednesday 18 May 2022 – 6:00pm – 8:00pm – Hartley Community Hall
  • Wednesday, 25 May 2022 – 6:00pm – 8:00pm – Seminar Room, Katoomba Cultural Centre
  • Saturday, 4 June 2022 – 10:00am – 12:00pm — Blackheath Neighbourhood Centre

ONLINE sessions

  • Monday 23 May 2022 – 6:30pm – 8:00pm
  • Tuesday 31 May 2022 – 6:30 – 8:00pm – Katoomba to Blackheath (REF) specialised online session: Biodiversity and water quality
  • Monday 6 June 2022 – 6:30pm-8:00pm – Katoomba to Blackheath (REF) specialised online session: Localised access/construction and completion
  • Thursday 9 June 2022 – 6:30 – 8:00pm
If you would like to find out more about the Great Western Highway Upgrade Program, please contact the project team:
T: 1800 953 777
PHOTO: Artist’s representation of Great Western Highway, near Explorers Road (indicative only, final layout to be determined through detailed design)