Armidale Regional Council will undertake further urgent and critical improvement works on the natural disaster-prone Kempsey Road, with governments providing almost $5 million.
Kempsey Road re-opened to the public this week, after emergency work was undertaken to address undermining between Georges Junction and Lower Creek, following the recent heavy rain.
Last year's bushfires, which destroyed vegetation and groundcover in the area, combined with continual heavy rainfall have meant Kempsey Road has been closed to traffic more often than not.
Northern Tablelands MP Adam Marshall announced on Wednesday $4.95 million in joint State and Commonwealth funding, through round two of the NSW Fixing Local Roads program.
"Due to the steep terrain keeping Kempsey Road maintained and safe is a big job for council at the best of times, without landslips and washouts caused by wild weather," Mr Marshall said.
"For the people of Lower Creek the constant road closures which have left them isolated from essential services and often without incomes has been beyond frustrating."
The council will use these funds to alleviate some of these issues, conducting critical road improvements, including sealing, repairs and safety works west of Lower Creek community towards Black Bird Creek Bridge.
Mayor Ian Tiley said the funding would allow for significant improvements to Kempsey Road.
"By sealing the section of road, productivity of the immediate area and the region as a whole will be boosted," Cr Tiley said.
"The proposed work aims to minimise impact of frequent rock fall and erosion events that occur in the area, and improve and maintain stability of the road.
"Constant access will mean landholders, visitors and freight operators will be less likely to be subjected to extended road closures and dangerous conditions that currently persist on the road.
"Trying to prevent the number of road closures in the area will also provide stability to the agriculture sector and hopefully encourage its growth in what is an incredibly fertile part of the shire."
A Transport for NSW engineer is working with council to ensure all maintenance undertaken is of the highest standard.
All successful projects will be completed within two years to ensure local communities see the benefits as quickly as possible.
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